Under the Banner of Heaven

Fast and intriguing (and a bit unnerving) read! Krakauer has created a quick, intense, and accurate work where he examines how Mormon Fundamentalist/extreme groups have developed into violent traditions and convictions because of the concept of the Mormon religions’ history and need to be the “truest” religion on earth. He details several accounts of former LDS members who took the religion to its most fanatical reaches, often including violence and abuse. This was my first introduction to the Lafferty brothers, two of whom murdered their sister-in-law and baby niece, all in the name of their god. The book also discusses the Elizabeth Smart case, the Rulon and Warren Jeff’s FLDS group, and the Mountain Meadows Massacre. To get a better understanding of these situations, Krakauer gives an in-depth look at the history of Joseph Smith, Brigham Young, and other LDS prophets. I learned significantly more than I anticipated with this heavily researched book, which surprised me, considering that I was raised in Utah, where nearly all of these violent histories occurred. I highly recommend reading this book, as it allows a fair account of what role religion and personal revelation can play when taken to the extreme.

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3 Comments

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3 responses to “Under the Banner of Heaven

  1. I bought this book about eight years ago and have been meaning to get around to reading it. Thanks for reminding me of why I bought it to begin with.

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