It has been awhile since I posted links to an online essay, so here goes: The Theology of Memory: Mormon Historical Consciousness, by Steven L. Olsen from a 2007 FARMS Review. It's an easy read and raises some interesting questions.
The main point -- not original but clearly presented -- concerns the nature of LDS theology:
The belief systems of many Christian denominations are expressed in formal terms, that is, as logical deductions from metaphysical or supernatural premises that are organized more or less in a systematic manner. By contrast, the core religious beliefs of Latter-day Saints derive largely from spiritual experiences and are expressed in narrative terms. That is, Latter-day Saint theology is more experiential than propositional. For example, the church's standard works ... are structured largely as historical narratives, or they have clear and direct reference to historical events and contexts.
The stress on experience rather than history points toward the author's consideration of memory (whereas a focus on history per se would point toward consideration of documents or artifacts). He goes on to make some observations about one of the two key events in LDS history, the First Vision.
I conclude with some reflections on the role of memory in defining the historical beginning and central truth claims of the church, namely, Joseph Smith's first vision. These reflections address the theology of memory on two levels: the individual memory of Joseph Smith regarding this defining event in his life and the symbolic significance of this event in defining the religious identity of the Latter-day Saints.
Which reminds us that our knowledge of the details of the First Vision as a historical event are dependent not just on the various written accounts supplied by Joseph, but also on "the individual memory of Joseph Smith." Recall that the first written account by Joseph dates to 1832, twelve years after the event.
Memory can be tricky. In the LDS context, this is discussed at length by Mark P. Leone in Roots of Modern Mormonism, where Leone describes how older Latter-day Saints in small Arizona communities would provide personal narratives of local events from their own lifetime that were rather different from objective and verifiable descriptions of those events. [Olsen cites Leone, but not on this point.] Remembrance has its limitations, it seems. What I've read of the scientific study of memory also suggests that memory operates selectively and non-comprehensively, stripping remembered events down to a few particulars, sort of like a digital file compression algorithm.
So I guess I'm more comfortable calling LDS theology historical or even narrative, but not experiential. We may not like propositional theology, but at least it has a certain time-independence to its arguments. A theology rooted in memory and experience raises tricky issues (see Omni 1:17 for another illustration of the problem).