Assistant Professor of French Modern Languages & Literatures

Nora Martin Peterson, Assistant Professor (Ph.D. Brown, comparative literature) teaches courses on medieval and Renaissance French literature and culture. Prof. Peterson is an affiliate in the Medieval and Renaissance Studies Program as well as the Women's and Gender Studies Program at UNL.

Check out the story about Dr. Peterson for our "Spotlight" series. Read it here.


  • Books
    • Involuntary Confessions of the Flesh in Early Modern France (Newark: University of Delaware Press, 2016).
  • Peer Reviewed Articles
    • “‘Innocence Interrupted:’ Bewusstsein and the Body in Heinrich von Kleist.” Colloquia Germanica 45.2 (2012): 129–143. Appeared 2015.
    • “The Impossible Strip Tease: Nudity in John Calvin and Michel de Montaigne.” Renaissance and Reformation 37.1 (2014): 65-86.
    • “Tracing the Origins of Success: Implications for Successful Aging,” co-authored with Peter Martin, Iowa State University. Contribution: 75%. The Gerontologist 2014. DOI: 10.1093/geront/gnu054.
    • "Competing Codes and Involuntary Confessions of the Flesh in the Princesse de Clèves." Romanic Review 103.1 – 2 (2012): 233 – 253.
    • “‘The Truth Will Out:’ Blushing, Involuntary Confession and Self-Knowledge in the Heptaméron.” Renaissance and Reformation 32.2 (Spring 2009): 33 – 52.
    • “‘Innocence Interrupted:’ Bewusstsein and the Body in Heinrich von Kleist.” In press at Colloquia Germanica.
    • “Sins, Sex, and Secrets: The Legacy of Confession from the Decameron to the Heptaméron.” In Reconsidering Boccaccio: Medieval Contexts and Global Intertexts. (peer-reviewed volume of conference proceedings). In press.
  • Book Reviews, Encyclopedia Entries, and Editorial Work
    • Contributor to Jean Bodin’s De la Démonomanie des sorciers, ed. Virginia Krause, Christian Martin, and Eric MacPhail (Geneva: Droz, 2016).
    • Volume and Editor Entry Advisor, “Jean Bodin.” In Literature Criticism from 1400 to 1800, vol. 242. Farmington Hills, MI: Gale Research Co., 2015. 1–193.
    • “Corps héroïque, corps de chair dans les récits de vie de la première modernité.” Ed. Christine Sukic. The Sixteenth Century Journal 45.3 (2014): 775 – 6.
    • Volume and Editor Entry adviser, “Jean Bodin.” In Literature Criticism from 1400 to 1800. Forthcoming at Gale Research Co.
    • “John Gower: The French Balades.” R.F. Yeager. The Sixteenth Century Journal 44.1 (2013): 196 – 7.
    • “Martin Luther.” The International Encyclopedia of Revolution and Protest, Ed. Immanuel Ness. Wiley-Blackwell, 2009.

Selected Conference Presentations

  • “Courting Marguerite de Valois.” Sixteenth Century Society and Conference. October 24, 2015.
  • “Body Switching in Martin Guerre and the Heptaméron.” Renaissance Society of America. March 27, 2015.
  • “What is More Solid than the Body? Sprezzatura in French Courtly Handbooks. Invited lecture at the University of Kansas (Lecture Series, Hall Center for the Humanities Gender and Early Modern Forum). May 5, 2014.
  • “‘This Night I’ll Conjure, Though I Die Therefore:’ Magic and the Body in the Faust Volksbuch and Marlowe.” Sixteenth Century Society and Conference. October 24, 2013.
  • “Boccaccio’s Sacramental Legacy: Confession in Marguerite de Navarre’s Heptaméron.” Boccaccio at 700: Medieval Contexts and Global Intertexts. Binghamton University. April 26, 2013.
  • “‘Ils sont honteux de se voir nus:’ Covering and Uncovering the Flesh in Calvin and Montaigne.” Sixteenth Century Society and Conference. October 27, 2012.
  • Presentation of Research. Invited lecture at Medieval and Renaissance Studies Colloquium. UNL. November 8, 2012.
  • “At the Frontier of Knowledge: Involuntary Confessions of the Flesh in Novellas 10 and 62 of the Heptaméron.” Sixteenth Century Society Conference. October 29, 2011.
  • “‘Ich will nichts wissen:’ Representations of the Body in Heinrich von Kleist.” Zum 200. Todestag Heinrich von Kleists. Kentucky Foreign Language Conference. April 14 – 17, 2011.

Courses Taught at UNL

  • FREN 498/898, French Fairy Tales
  • MODL 101, Windows to the World
  • MODL 189, H, Gender in World Literature
  • FREN 201 – 2/210, Intermediate Language
  • FREN 204, Conversation and Composition
  • FREN/ENGL/WMNS/MRST 388, Body Language: Love, Politics, and the Self in French Literature
  • FREN 498/898, Forbidden Love
  • MODL 870, Introduction to Literary Criticism
  • FREN 929, Special Topics: Survey of Medieval and Renaissance Literature
  • FREN 929, Special Topics: French Women Writers

Teaching Related Activities

  • Honors Thesis Director, Madeline Shomos, 2013-present
  • Honors Thesis Reader, Kelsey Comfort, Department of English, 2014; Ellery Wadman- Goetsch, French, 2014
  • Master’s Exam Reviewer: 2013-present
  • Initiative to Launch Interdisciplinary Courses in MLL, 2013-present


  • Service to the University
    • Francophone Studies Search Committee, 2016
    • SBSRC Faculty Advisory Board, 2016-present
    • College Executive Committee (appointed), 2014-2015
    • Advisor to the French & Francophone Club at UNL, 2015-present Department Curriculum Committee, 2013-2016
    • Advisory Board for Medieval and Renaissance Studies, 2012-present
    • Digital Humanities Certificate Advisory Committee, 2014-present
    • Search Committee Member, Arabic Assistant Professor of Practice, 2012-2013 Job Market Information Session for Graduate Students, 2012, 2013
  • Service to the Profession
    • Panel Chair, “Lire et Relire Montaigne.” Sixteenth Century Society and Conference. October 23, 2015.
    • Co-organizer, ACLA 2012. Responsibilities include organizing logistics, website management, selecting seminars, and facilitating all aspects of planning a major national conference. 2011–2012
    • Panel organizer and moderator. Self-Constructions: Reexamining the Early Modern Self. ACLA Vancouver. March 31–April 3. 2011

    Items on this Page:

    Research Interests

    • Early modern literature and culture: the body and self; religion, court, torture
    • La querelle des femmes
    • Aging and medicine
    • Travel narratives
    • Comparative literature
    • Literary theory
    • Marguerite de Navarre
    • Heinrich von Kleist

    Awards, Honors, and Nominations

    • 2016 University of Nebraska College of Arts and Sciences Distinguished Teaching Award
    • 2015 Newberry Library Center for Renaissance Studies Consortium Fellowship (short term)
    • 2015 International Travel Grant from UNL CAS for travel to RSA Conference in Berlin ($1500)
    • 2013 Interdisciplinary Seed Grant in the Arts and Sciences. “Cultural Crossroads: Increasing the Interdisciplinary Presence of Modern Languages and Literatures” ($4400)
    • 2013 Maude Hammond Fling Faculty Research Fellowship (Research Council Grant-in-Aid Award, $4300): Archival Research for “Signs of the Self: Involuntary Confessions of the Flesh in Early Modern Literature and Culture.”
    • 2013 Departmental Summer Research Travel Award ($1000): Archival Research at Newberry Library, Chicago, Illinois.

    Professional Association Memberships

    • The Sixteenth Century Society
    • American Comparative Literature Association
    • Renaissance Society of America