Monday, February 8, 2010

Mormon culture

In my history class today we talked about nationalism and the nations form when an "imaginary community" gets together. Imaginary in this sense doesn't mean false, just that it only exists in the mind of the people rather than in any official designation. We talked about how northern Californians see themselves as a different community than southern California. Many students in class were willing to identify themselves as Mormons, or as Utahns, because those designations are pretty indisputable. But when our teacher asked who saw themselves as part of the "Utah Mormon culture" only me and one other student raised our hands. That to me was pretty crazy. When forty percent of the class said that they were Mormons from Utah and only two out the twenty or twenty five students were willing to admit that they belonged to the culture associated with that.

Do all the rest of the students feel like they've just completely transcended the cultural influences of the Book of Mormon Belt (Idaho, Utah, Arizona and Nevada) and found some sort of pure Mormonism that is separate from the community in which it is found.

So what do you feel is part of the Utah Mormon culture and do you consider yourself a part of it?


  1. I think the rest of them were just in denial. Come on they go to BYU and are from Utah... you can't avoid Mormon culture.

  2. Anything you need to know about Utah Mormon culture can be found at Some of it's bad, some of it's ridiculous, but I don't think all of it is negative. I mean, the stereotypical Mormon guy is in grad school and his wife is a scrapbooker starting her own photog business? Sure, it's trite and you might want to be the househusband while Caitlin gets her PhD, but I don't mind our church being stereotyped by overachieving men and their supportive wives, when the men are humble and the women are intelligent (which this blog suggests they are not). It's like Mona Lisa Smile. I am Julia Stiles. I'm a housewife because I choose to be. The Utah Mormon culture suggests it as the only option.

    That's the essence of Utah Mormon culture. There is one way to do everything, it is decreed by God, and anyone who does it differently is less-than-righteous.

  3. I think part of the Utah Mormon culture is saying that you don't belong to the Utah Mormon culture, because generally people who form the large part of Utah Mormon culture are nice and kind and *fairly* open-minded, and "Utah Mormon" has a negative connotation, so they don't want to be seen negatively.
    The negative side to Utah Mormon culture is the self-righteous sort.

  4. I think I am the definition of Utah Mormon culture.