Emeritus Appointment

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Research/Career Interests: 

Robert NyeRobert Nye teaches European Intellectual History and The History of Sexuality. His research interests are in the history of the social sciences, medicine and society, and sexuality, particularly in France and Western Europe.


  • Professor Nye has recently edited a reader titled Sexuality for Oxford University Press that considers sexual theory and behavior in historical perspective from ancient Greece to the present. He is also presently working on a comparative history of the professions as instances of masculine culture, with a special emphasis on medicine, and on the changing historical discourses on sex and gender.
  • Nye took History degrees from San Jose State (1964) and the University of Wisconsin (1965, 1969) and taught at the University of Oklahoma for 25 years, becoming a George Lynn Cross Research Professor in 1992. He came to Oregon State in 1994, and as of June 2007 he is the Emeritus Thomas Hart and Mary Jones Horning Professor of the Humanities and Professor of History. Nye has also taught at Harvard University, been a Fellow of Churchill College, Cambridge, and has won Fellowships from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Harry Frank Guggenheim Foundation, and the Rutgers Center for Historical Analysis. He was a fellow in history at the Australian National University in Canberra in the Summer of 1999 and a fellow at the Max Planck Institute for the History of Science in Berlin in the summer of 2004. Nye served a three-year term on the editorial board of the American Historical Review, 2003-2006. His most recent publication, "Western Masculinities in War and Peace," appeared in the AHR in April 2007.   Nye has also edited 2 books and published 50 scholarly articles and chapters.

Select Publications


(Oxford University Press, 1999).


Masculinity and Male Codes of Honor

Masculinity and Male Codes of Honor in Modern France

(New York, 1993, paperback 1998, University of California Press)

Crime, Madness and Politics
in Modern France:

The Medical Concept
of National Decline

(Princeton, N.J., 1984)

 Crime, Madness, and Politics in Modern France
Anti-Democratic Sources

The Anti-Democratic
Origins of Elite Theory:

Pareto, Mosca, Michels

(Beverly Hills and London, 1977)

The Origins of
Crowd Psychology:
Gustave LeBon and
Crisis of Mass Democracy
in the Third Republic

(Beverly Hills and London, 1975)

The Origins of Crowd Psychology


Select Articles:

  • “Introduction” to “Forum on Eighteenth Century Medicine,” Eighteenth Century Studies 35 (2002), 235-8
  • “Kennis over macht: Medicalisering, de staat en de rechten van het individu,” Liesbet Nys, Henk de Smaele, Jo Tollebeek & Kaat Wils, eds., De Zieke Natie: Over de medicalisering van de samenleving, 1860-1914 (Groningen: Historiche Uitgeverij, 2002), 22-41
  •  “The Pacte Civil de Solidarité and the History of Sexuality” French Politics, Society and Culture 21 #1 (Spring, 2003), 87-100
  • “The Evolution of the Concept of Medicalization in the late Twentieth Century,” Journal of the History of the Behavioral Sciences 39 # 2 (Spring, 2003), 1-15.
  •  “Two Capital Punishment Debates in France: 1908 and 1981,” Historical Reflections; Réflexions historiques, Vol 29 #3,(Summer, 2003), 211-228.
  • “Fertility and Contraception During the Demographic Transition: Qualitative and Quantitative Approaches,” (with Frans van Poppel  & Simon Szreter) Journal of Interdisciplinary History xxxiv:2 (Autumn, 2003), 141-154.
  • “Sexuality,” in Teresa A. Meade and Merry E. Wiesner-Hanks, Eds., A Companion to Gender History (Oxford: Blackwell, 2004), 11-25.
  • “Mosse, Masculinity and the History of Sexuality,” in Payne, Sorkin and Tortorice, eds., What History Tells: George L. Mosse and the Culture of Modern Europe (Madison, WI.: University of Wisconsin Press, 2004), 183-201.
  • “Locating Masculinity: Some Recent Work on Men,” Signs 30 #3 (Spring, 2005), 1937-1962.
  • “Médecins, éthique médicale et État en France 1789-1947,” Le Mouvement Social, #214, Janvier-Mars 2006,25-42.
  • “Western Masculinities in War and Peace: An Essay Review,” American Historical Review 112 #2 (April, 2007), 417-438.
  • “Women, Work and Citizenship in France since 1789,” Gender&History, vol. 19, No. 1 (2007), 186-191.
  • “Afterword” in Chris Forth and Bertrand Taithe, eds., French Masculinities: History, Culture, Politics (Houndmills, Basingstoke: Palgrave, 2007), 232-241.
  • “The Biosexual Foundations of Our Modern Concept of Gender,” in Nicole C. Karafylis and Gotlind Ulshöfer, eds., Sexualized Brains: Scientific Modeling of Emotional Intelligence from a Cultural Perspective (Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2008).
  • “The Legacy of Masculine Codes of Honor and the Admission of Women to the Medical Profession in the Nineteenth Century,” in Ellen S. More, et.al., Women Physicians and the Cultures of Medicine (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2008), 141-159.
  • “The Discourses of Practitioners in Nineteenth and Twentieth-Century France,” in Robert B. Baker and Laurence B. McCullough, eds., The Cambridge World History Of Medical Ethics (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2009), 418-426.
  • “Regard sur vingt ans de travaux: The Journal of the History of Sexuality,” Clio: Histoire, Femmes et Sociétés 31 (2010), 239-266.
  • “How Sex Became Gender,” Psychoanalysis and History , (2010) 12, #2, 195-210.
  • “The Transmission of Masculinities,” in Philip S. Gorski, ed., Bourdieu and Historical Analysis (Durham and London: Duke University Press, 2013), 286-302.
  • “How the Duel of Honour Promoted Civility and Attenuated Violence in Western Europe,” in Carolyn Strange, et. al. eds., Honour, Violence and Emotions in History  (London: Bloomsbury, 2014), 183-202.
  • Forthcoming: volume edited with Erika Milam, “Scientific Masculinities” Osiris 30 (2015).