Could Joseph Smith Have Written the Book of Mormon? Part II: The Uses of Irony. The Book of Mormon is replete with examples of irony, including various kinds of classical rhetorical irony. Joseph Smith’s personal writings at the time of the publication of the Book of Mormon are almost entirely devoid of irony or even any sense that Joseph understood the various kinds and complexities of irony. How can one explain this? I examine various examples of irony in the Book of Mormon, especially verbal and dramatic irony, and look at them in relation to Joseph Smith’s writing and the long tradition of irony from the ancient Greeks and Hebrews up to the nineteenth century.
Robert A. Rees, Robert D. Anderson