Peculiar Portrayals: Mormons on the Page, Stage, and Screen

By Mark T. Decker; Michael Austin | Go to book overview

4
Avenging Angels
The Nephi Archetype and Blood Atonement in Neil LaBute,
Brian Evenson, and Levi Peterson, and the Making
of the Mormon American Writer

J. AARON SANDERS


I. Prologue:
Heroes and Righteous Murder

On July 24, 1984, in American Fork, Utah, Dan Lafferty and his brother Ron paid a visit to their sister-in-law, Brenda, while their youngest brother, Allen, was at work. “[Dan] found his fifteen-month old niece, Erica, standing in her crib, smiling up at him. ‘I spoke to her for a minute,’ Lafferty recalls. ‘I told her, I’m not sure what this is all about, but apparently it’s God’s will that you leave this world; perhaps we can talk about it later.’ And then he ended her life with a ten-inch boning knife. After dispatching Erica, he calmly walked into the kitchen and used the same knife to kill the baby’s mother.”1

These heinous murders are the impetus for Jon Krakauer’s 2003 book Under the Banner of Heaven. In it Krakauer delves into Mormon history and doctrine in an attempt to understand what motivated the Lafferty brothers. “There is a dark side to religious devotion that is too often ignored or denied,” Krakauer writes. “As a means of motivating people to be cruel or inhumane—as a means of inciting evil, to borrow the vocabulary of the devout—there may be no more potent force than religion.”2 One of Krakauer’s specific discoveries is that the ritualistic details of the Lafferty murders (the slitting of the throat), along with Don’s motivation to murder (God told me to), evoke the controversial nineteenth-century Mormon doctrine of blood atonement.

-87-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Peculiar Portrayals: Mormons on the Page, Stage, and Screen
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this book
  • Bookmarks
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
/ 203

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.