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About Rick Anderson

Rick Anderson is Associate Dean for Scholarly Resources & Collections in the J. Willard Marriott Library at the University of Utah.  He earned his B.S. and M.L.I.S. degrees at Brigham Young University, and has worked previously as a bibliographer for YBP, Inc., and in management and administrative positions in the libraries of the University of North Carolina, Greensboro and the University of Nevada, Reno. He serves on numerous editorial and advisory boards and is a regular contributor to the Scholarly Kitchen blog and to Library Journal’s Academic Newswire. In 2005, Rick was identified by Library Journal as a “Mover and Shaker”—one of the “50 people shaping the future of libraries.” In 2008 he was elected president of the North American Serials Interest Group, and he was named an ARL Research Library Leadership Fellow for 2009-10. In 2013 Rick received the HARRASSOWITZ Leadership in Library Acquisitions Award and was invited to give the Gould Distinguished Lecture on Technology and the Quality of Life at the University of Utah.

Addressing Prickly Issues

Review of A Reason for Faith: Navigating LDS Doctrine & Church History, ed. Laura Harris Hales. Salt Lake City: Deseret Book; Provo, UT: BYU Religious Studies Center, 2016. 264 pp. $24.99.

Abstract: This collection of essays conveniently assembles faithful and rigorous treatments of difficult questions related to LDS history and doctrine. While two or three of the essays are sufficiently flawed to give cause for concern and while some of its arguments have been expressed differently in earlier publications, overall this book can be confidently recommended to interested and doctrinally mature Latter-day Saints. Continue reading

Mormonism, Materialism, and Politics: Six Things We Must Understand in Order to Survive as Latter-day Saints

Abstract: We are called as Latter-day Saints to be a force for good in the world in every way possible, which necessarily includes active and positive engagement with political and social issues. At the same time, it is essential to our spiritual survival that we never allow ourselves to forget the radical difference between the philosophies of men — no matter how superficially harmonious some of these may seem with particular principles of the gospel or with some aspects of traditional Mormon culture — and the teachings of the prophets. In a world that constantly entices us with messages designed to lure us away from the eternal truths of the restored gospel and into the embrace of philosophies that are partially and contingently true at best and actively destructive at worst, we must exercise constant vigilance. This essay suggests and discusses six propositions that, if understood and embraced, should help us maintain that vigilance. Continue reading

Mormonism and Intellectual Freedom

Abstract: To many outside the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (and to some of its members), the Church’s teachings and practices appear not only socially and experientially constraining, but intellectually restrictive as well, given its centralized system of doctrinal boundary maintenance and its history of sometimes sanctioning members who publicly dissent from its teachings. Do these practices amount to a constraint of intellectual freedom? This essay argues that they do not, and offers several possible explanations for the commonly-asserted position that they do. Continue reading