Thomas W. Murphy criticizes apologetic arguments for a limited geography theory for the BOM.

Academic / Technical Report
Thomas W. Murphy

Thomas W. Murphy, "Simply Implausible: DNA and a Mesoamerican Setting for the Book of Mormon," Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought 36, no. 4 (Winter 2003): 109–131

Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought
Thomas W. Murphy
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The insistence by LDS scholars on a limited geographic setting for the Book of Mormon should not be confused with the accrual of actual scientific or historical evidence. A limited geography or local colonization in Central America does not save the Book of Mormon's historical claims from the implications of genetic research. In fact, no evidence from molecular anthropology supports a limited colonization of Middle Eastern or Israelite populations in Central America. The idea that founder effect and genetic drift may account for the lack of genetic evidence is contradicted by statements and prophecies in the Book of Mormon itself, and would require hundreds of unlikely chance events in three different founding populations. While John Sorenson has made the best case for a limited geographic setting for the Book of Mormon in Central America, his proposal depends upon a rejection of the scientific method and a tautological faith in the historicity of the text, as well as requiring unwarranted directional shifts and an assumption that most references to flora, fauna, and technology in the scripture are misnomers. LDS scholars had already soundly refuted particulars of his proposal prior to publication, and other LDS scholars have done the same following publication. Sorenson's limited geography has gained ascendancy through repetition and as a byproduct both of a repressive social atmosphere in the LDS research community and a confusion of prayer with science. But however ascendant, a limited geography for the Book of Mormon anywhere in the Americas is, in sum, simply implausible.

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