Oct. 11 lecture to honor alumna, pre-eminent medieval historian

Released on 10/08/2010, at 2:00 AM
Office of University Communications
University of Nebraska–Lincoln

WHEN: Monday, Oct. 11, 2010

WHERE: Great Plains Art Museum, 1155 Q St.

Lincoln, Neb., October 8th, 2010 —

The University of Nebraska-Lincoln's Medieval and Renaissance Studies Program will honor alumna and internationally renowned medieval historian Mary Martin McLaughlin in a memorial lecture Oct. 11.

McLaughlin, a Grand Island native, earned a bachelor's degree in history from Nebraska in 1940, a master's degree the following year and returned to the university to teach while writing her dissertation. She received her Ph.D., from Columbia University in 1953.

Medieval scholars hold her work in the highest regard, particularly her research on the role of women, children and families in the Middle Ages, said Carole Levin, director of UNL's Medieval and Renaissance Studies Program and Willa Cather professor of history.

"McLaughlin is a model not only for her own erudition, but for her great support of other women scholars," Levin said.

McLaughlin died in 2006 at 87.

Author, editor and consultant Bonnie Wheeler, an expert in medieval women's and gender studies, will present the lecture. She is director of Medieval Studies at Southern Methodist University.

Wheeler worked with McLaughlin for nearly a decade on two manuscripts on the abbess Heloise and her companion, Abelard, a 12th-century philosopher and theologian. While there has been much scholarly work accomplished on the doomed lovers Abelard and Heloise, and Abelard's own importance, McLaughlin was the first to recognize the great significance of Heloise herself. The collection of Heloise's letters has been published and the biography is forthcoming next year.

Wheeler will present "Traces of Memory of Heloise: Woman, Lover, Abbess, Philosopher," at 7:30 p.m. Oct. 11 at the Great Plains Art Museum, 1155 Q St., on UNL's City Campus. The event is co-sponsored by the Department of History and the Honors Program. It is free and open to the public.

The intent is to make the memorial lecture an annual event, Levin said.

Other presentations as part of the Medieval and Renaissance Studies Program's fall lecture series include:

-- Thursday, Oct. 28, 7:30 p.m., Regency Room of the Nebraska Union -- Tim Harris, Munro-Goodwin Wilkinson professor in European history at Brown University, will present the Carroll R. Pauley Lecture. His lecture, co-sponsored by UNL's Department of History, is titled "'A formall hypocrite, a loathsome animall': Scotophobia, anti-Puritanism and Charles I's appeal to public opinion on the eve of the English Civil War."

-- Thursday, Nov. 11, 7:30 p.m., 228 Andrews Hall -- Catherine Loomis, associate professor of English at the University of New Orleans, will present "'Little Man, Little Man': Early Modern Representations of Robert Cecil."

-- Thursday, Dec. 2, 7:30 p.m., 228 Andrews Hall -- Levin will present "Incest, Poison and Slander at the Jacobean Court: The Lake Family and the Countess of Exeter." Writer: Jean Ortiz Jones, University Communications, (402) 472-8320, jjones16@unl.edu

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