Graduation Year

2004

Document Type

Thesis

Degree

M.A.

Degree Granting Department

English

Major Professor

Fleming, John.

Keywords

Lesbian relationships, Mormon, Polygamy, Lesbian, Latter-day Saints

Abstract

"The 24th of July" is a fictional novel set in the present day. The story centers around Michelle, an eighteen year old girl from Warm Springs, Idaho, who fears the sexual games she has played with her cousin Edna have tainted her for a Temple marriage. She meets Duke, a charismatic fundamentalist polygamist, who believes polygamy is part of the plan for eternal salvation as set down by the original doctrine of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and the prophet Joseph Smith. Michelle sees Duke as her chance to put her relationship with Edna in the past and obtain the rewards waiting for her in the celestial heaven by marrying him and having babies. But life as a polygamist wife is more difficult than she anticipated and it is further complicated by the fact that she and Cheron, Duke's second wife, fall in love. When Duke discovers the nature of their relationship, both are forced into making choices that will change their entire way of life.

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