The Midrashic Imagination and the Book of Mormon
Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought
“With the Babylonian destruction of the First Temple in 587BCE, it became necessary for the Jewish Fathers to create, as it were, a “synagogue in exile,” in which the emphasis shifted from the temple to the Torah as the locus of worship. With the destruction of the Second Temple in 70 C.E., the Jewish rabbis once again emphasized the Torah as their temple. During these periods and after, the text of God’s revelation became the focus, not only of the Jewish heart and mind but also of its imagination. These sages considered every jot and tittle, every caesura and metaphor, as God’s design and, further, that God intended, even commanded, the rabbis to search out not only all possible interpretations of the text and everything that lay hidden in the text, but more than this—to create all possible inventions and imaginative explorations that lay embedded in or suggested by the text.”

Toward a Feminist Mormon Midrash: Mormon Women and the Imaginative Reading of Scripture
Suntone 166
“Since Mormonism as a restored religion includes a continuation of patriarchy and a male-dominated authoritarian ecclesiastical structure, there have been few feminine perspectives on our sacred texts and our cultural history, although that has changed somewhat for the better over the past several decades as Mormon women scholars and feminist thinkers and writers have attempted to bring some balance to our understanding. Some Latter-day Saint women have expressed a wish for a more inclusive Church polity or at least the inclusion of more women’s voices, and yet there is considerable resistance to this desire. Without authoritative change in either policy or principle, what options are open to women? Let me suggest one—that in addition to using their scholarly and expressive skills, Latter-day Saint women begin using their imaginations, their personal experience, their presence, and their point of view in approaching our scriptural literature.”