Edward Behrend-Martinez

"I am interested in how society and culture shape and control the individual historically. Specifically, I study how law, family, sex, and the definition of gender in the past influenced people and their actions. Understanding these processes illuminates the connections between us and the greater experience of humanity across time and place. It is that real connection that exists between us and people of the past that I attempt to show my students."

Edward Behrend-Martínez studies and writes about everyday life in early modern Iberia. He is the author of Unfit for Marriage: Impotent Spouses on Trial in the Basque Region of Spain 1650-1750 (Reno: University of Nevada Press, 2007) and several articles on the law, the Church, sexuality, and gender in early modern Spain. He is currently researching and writing about domestic violence, the Spanish household, and the courts. Dr. Behrend-Martínez is Professor of History at Appalachian State University in Boone, North Carolina. He is also currently working on editing and contributing to the 1650-1800 volume of a collection titled A Cultural History of Marriage.

As a professor at Appalachian State University, Dr. Behrend-Martinez teaches graduate and undergraduate courses on the History of Marriage, Spain, the Inquisition, and early modern Europe. He has led four, short-term study abroad courses in Spain, Ireland, Northern Ireland, France, Belgium, Luxembourg, and Germany, each detailing the history of the World Wars and the effects of religious and ethnic conflict.


Ph.D. University of Illinois-Chicago

Areas of Study

Latin American History, Early Modern European History, Women's and Gender History, Spanish History

Selected Courses

HIS 3136 Spain from 1469 to present

HIS 3137 Gender, Sex, and Sexuality in Early Modern Europe

HIS 3422 Women in European History

HIS 2314 European History 1348 to 1799

Selected Publications

Unfit for Marriage book coverBook and Book Chapters

"Tribunals and Jurisdictions" in Judging Faith, Punishing Sin: Inquisitions and Consistories in the Early Modern World, co-edited with Charles H. Parker, Cambridge University Press, forthcoming 2016.

"Abortion, Illicit Sex, and Social Control in the Courts of Early Modern Spain" Perspectives on Early Modern Women in Iberia and the Americas: Studies in Law, Society, Art and Literature in Honor of Anne J. Cruz, New York: Escribana Books, 2015.

"The Castigation and Abuse of Children in Early Modern Spain," in The Formation of the Child in Early Modern Spain. G. E. Coolidge. New York: Ashgate Press, 2014.

Unfit for Marriage: Impotent Spouses on Trial in the Basque Region of Spain, 1650-1750. Reno, Nevada: University of Nevada Press, 2007.

Recent Articles

"Spain Violated: Foreign Men in Spain's Heartland," European Review of History: Revue européenne d'histoire, Volume 22, Issue 4, 579-594, 2015.

"Taming Don Juan: Limiting Male Sexuality in Early Modern Spain," Gender and History, August, 2012.

Title: Professor
Department: Department of History

Email address: Email me

Phone: (828) 262-6023

Fax: (828) 262-4976

Office address
Anne Belk Hall 234N