Terryl L. Givens was born in upstate New York, raised in the American southwest, and did graduate work in Intellectual History (Cornell) and Comparative Literature (Ph.D. UNC Chapel Hill, 1988), working with Greek, German, Spanish, Portuguese, and English languages and literatures. As Professor of Literature and Religion and the Jabez A. Bostwick Professor of English at the University of Richmond, he taught courses in Romanticism, nineteenth century cultural studies, and the Bible and Literature. Currently, he is a Neal L. Maxwell Senior Fellow at Brigham Young University. He has published in literary theory, British and European Romanticism, Mormon studies, and intellectual history. The New York Times has praised him for his “provocative writing,” and Harpers has called him “fair-minded, scholarly, and unbiased.”
In addition to appearances on NPR, CNN, and Frontline's The Mormons, Dr. Givens has authored or edited dozens of books, primarily through Oxford University Press and Deseret Book. During non-pandemic times, he travels extensively with his wife, Fiona, to give firesides and strengthen the faith of members worldwide.
In addition to nurturing a healthy obsession with Julian of Norwich, Dr. Givens enjoys running, playing racquetball, and reconstructing the books in the personal library of Joseph Smith. He currently makes his home with his wife in the village of Midway, Utah.