Luther College's Anna Peterson receives award for most innovative article on modern Norwegian history

Luther College Assistant Professor of History Anna Peterson, Ph.D., received the prize for the best and most innovative contribution to Historisk Tidsskrift (the Norwegian Journal of History) for 2015. She is the first American historian to receive the award.

Peterson was not able to attend the annual conference of the Norwegian Historical Association at Volda University College in Norway this June when the prize was announced. The award will be officially presented to her during a reception hosted by the Luther Nordic Studies Program from 4-5 p.m. Monday, Sept. 19, in Qualley Lounge in the Center for Faith and Life on the Luther campus. The community is invited to attend the reception. Light refreshments will be served.

Her article, "Single Mothers and Midwives Respond to the Castberg Laws, 1916-1940," explore the Castbergian Child Laws of 1915 proposed and written by Johan Castberg, 1862-1926, and Katti Anker Møller, 1868-1945. The laws are well known in Norwegian political history because they equalized the rights of children born in and out of wedlock. In her contribution to the journal, Peterson details women's responses to the maternity policies included in the legislation, which promised single mothers and midwives economic benefits while bolstering health and welfare officials' authority over maternity.

Peterson argues that the varied reactions of single mothers and midwives prompted small and large-scale changes that affected the shape of some of Norway's earliest and most ground-breaking social policies. Peterson's piece was published in the June 2015 Historisk Tidsskrift. The full article can be found here:

Founded in 1869, The Norwegian Historical Association publishes Historisk Tidsskrift and serves the interests of researchers, students and history teachers in Norway. The association aims to promote historical research, encourage the teaching of history at all levels and strengthen the position of the discipline in the Norwegian society.

A member of the Luther College faculty since 2013, Peterson teaches courses in European, Scandinavian and Russian history. She is a board member of the Nordic Studies, Russian Studies and Women and Gender Studies departments. Peterson earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Scandinavian Studies from Concordia College, Moorhead; a Master of Arts degree in history from the University of North Dakota; and a Doctor of Philosophy degree in history from The Ohio State University.

A national liberal arts college with an enrollment of 2,350, Luther offers an academic curriculum that leads to the Bachelor of Arts degree in more than 60 majors and pre-professional programs. For more information about Luther visit the college's website: