St. Bonaventure University

Faculty Emeriti

Professors from all schools in the university who have been bestowed the title of "emeritus" upon retirement from full-time teaching.

The title of professor emeritus is an honorary designation that may be awarded to recognize those who have retired with the earned rank of associate professor or professor after at least 10 years of full-time meritorious service to the university and their field of knowledge. While no longer full-time faculty members, some continue to teach on occasion as adjunct instructors.

Gan, Barry L.


School of Arts and Sciences

Professor Emeritus, Philosophy

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Mailing Address: 226 N. Third St., Olean, NY 14760

  • Ph.D. in philosophy, University of Rochester, 1984
  • M.A. in philosophy, University of Rochester, 1981
  • B.A. with distinction in philosophy, University of Rochester, 1970

Teaching certification and other graduate work in English and education

  • Part time at Boston University, Brandeis University, State University of New York at Binghamton, Ithaca College, and Russell Sage College, 1972-1975.

Other undergraduate work

  • Harvard University, summer, 1969
  • Miami University in Oxford, Ohio, 1966-1967
  • Department of Philosophy, St. Bonaventure University
    Taught courses in moral theory, introductory  philosophy, composition and critical thinking, metaphysics, social and  political philosophy, business ethics, medical ethics, news media ethics, war and morality.
  • Director of The Center for Nonviolence, St. Bonaventure University
    Taught courses on nonviolence and the philosophy of nonviolence, courses on Gandhi and King a course on causes and effects of violence, a course on the death penalty. Organize conferences and visits by outside speakers on issues related to violence and nonviolence. Served as mediator and arbitrator for community dispute resolution center.
  • Instructor of Philosophy, St. John Fisher College
    Taught courses in history of modern philosophy, business ethics, minds and machines, elementary and intermediate logic.
  • Part-time instructor of philosophy: University of Rochester, Monroe Community College, Rochester Institute of Technology, and St. John Fisher College
    Taught courses in introductory philosophy, critical thinking, intermediate logic, and war and morality.
  • English teacher: Brighton High School, Rochester, New York , Shenendehowa Middle Schools, Clifton Park, New York, Chenango Forks High School, Chenango Forks, New York
    Taught English, grades 7-12, non-Regents, Regents, and honors levels.

Books and Edited Works

  • Violence and Nonviolence: An Introduction. (New York: Rowman and Littlefield), 2013.
  • Nonviolence in Theory and Practice, 2nd and 3rd editions, Robert L. Holmes and Barry L. Gan, editors, Waveland Press: Chicago, 2004 and 2012.
  • Peace and Change, a quarterly journal of peace research, published by Blackwell. Co-editor from January, 2006 until June, 2009.
  • The Acorn: Journal of the Gandhi-King Society, editor, 1990-2016. In hard copy by subscription and also online at Now in the online resources of the Philosophy Documentation Center.
  • Proceedings of the Peace Bridge Conference, a statewide conference on mediation and arbitration. September, 1989.


  • Named as Candidate to the Fulbright Specialist Roster, January 2011- January 2016.
  • Peacewriting Award, for best unpublished nonfiction manuscript, Out of the Ashes of Violence, awarded by Peace and Justice Studies Association and the Omni Center for Peace, Justice, and Ecology, May 2007.
  • Greater Olean Area Chamber of Commerce Good News Environmental Award, Summer, 2002. "Anti-Warism: A New Pacifist Perspective."
  • Awarded the Frank Chapman Sharp Essay Prize by the American Philosophical Association. November, 1991.

Recent Articles

  • “Nonviolence,” in The SAGE Encyclopedia of Political Behavior, edited by Fathali M. Moghaddam (Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications), 2017.
  • “The Gandhi-King Tradition and Satyagraha,” forthcoming in The Routledge Handbook of Pacifism and Nonviolence, edited by Andrew Fiala (New York: Routledge), 2018.
  • “The Practice of Ahimsa,” in Nonviolence as a Way of Life: History, Theory, and Practice, edited by Predrag Cicovacki and Kandy Hess, (Delhi: Motilal Banarsidass Publishers) 2017.
  • “Seeds of Duty: Holding to Nonviolence in Being and Truth,” Keynote Address at the United Nations Celebration of the U.N. International Day of Nonviolence, October, 2016, in The Acorn Volume 16, Issue 1/2, Fall/Winter 2016/20 pp. 37-40 DOI: 10.5840/acorn2016/2017161/26
  • “A Philosophy of Peace,” in Peace Movements Worldwide: History, Psychology, Practices, edited by Michael Nagler and Marc Pilisuk, Praeger Publishers. 2010.
  • “Nonviolence and Peace Education” in Columbia University’s Online Encyclopedia of Peace Education.

Columns and Broadcasts (partial list)

  • “Gandhi’s Legacy.” One-hour television interview and broadcast on WXXI Public Broadcasting System in Rochester, NY. December, 2008.
  • “Terrorism,” a critique of the U.S. response, featured op-ed on America Online’s Opinions page, Oct. 12-13, 2001.

Invited Presentations (partial list)

  • “Gandhi, King, and How Their Lives Can Instruct Prospective Graduates." Presented to seniors and graduate students at Xibei University, Xi’an, China. May, 2017.
  • “Gandhi’s Influence on the West.” Presented to the Center for Gandhian and Indian Studies at Fudan University Shanghai, China, May, 2017.
  • “Gandhi's Relevance Today." Invited address at the United Nations in commemoration of the International Day of Nonviolence, organized by the Permanent Indian Mission to the United Nations, October 2, 2016.
  • "The Limits of Civil Resistance." Invited presentation at Alfred University's Bergren Forum, Alfred, NY, November 5, 2015.
  • “Out of the Ashes of Violence: Violent Myths, Nonviolent Realities.” Invited address at Shanghai University, December, 2012.
  • Xibei University, Xi’an, China. Dec. 4 – Dec. 12, 2012. Presented four papers: “The History of Nonviolence in America,” “American Culture,” “English Composition,” and “Cross-Cultural Communication.”
  • Beijing University. Informal presentation on nonviolent political strategy. June, 2010.
  • “Strategizing to Build Power by Mobilizing People and Building Coalitions,” presented on behalf of the International Center on Nonviolent Conflict as a course module to an adult class at the U.S. Institute of Peace, September 29, 2009.
  • Visiting Professor on nonviolence. Lectured and conducted a seminar of nonviolence each morning during one week with seniors completing the final module of their undergraduate course work at Colorado College, May, 2006.
  • “Violent Myths and Myths about Nonviolence,” presentation invited by the Peace and Justice Society of Chautauqua Institution, Chautauqua, NY, in the Hall of Philosophy, August, 1999
  • “Conflict Resolution,” invited presentation as a representative of the U.S. Fellowship of Reconciliation, to a group of approximately 70 teachers and administrators from Russia, Ukraine, Lithuania, and Moldavia, in Galitsena, outside of Moscow, Russia, October, 1994.

Invited Panelist

  • To international representative conference of the Fellowship of Reconciliation, in Dhaka, Bangladesh, November, 1998. As part of the week-long meeting, met with Sheikh Hasina Wajed, Prime Minister of Bangladesh.

Papers Presented (peer-reviewed)

  • “What’s Wrong with the U.S. Peace Movement?” Presented at the annual meeting of the Peace and Justice Studies Association, Winnipeg, Manitoba, October, 2010.
  • “Means and Ends, Nonviolence and Political Philosophy” Presented to the bi-annual meeting of the International Peace Research Association at the University of Leuven, Belgium, during the summer of 2008.
  • “Conscientious Objection in Israel”, co-presented with Laura Duhan Kaplan on at the Concerned Philosophers for Peace session of the American Philosophical Association’s Eastern Division meeting in Washington D.C., December, 2003.
  • "Libya and the Public's Right to Know." Presented to Concerned Philosophers for Peace at their annual meeting at the University of Notre Dame. October, 1990.

Community Service 

  • Olean Area Man-to-Man, Prostate Cancer group, 2000-date. Founded local education and support group sponsored by the American Cancer Society; monthly meetings; occasional guest speakers; frequent telephone support.
  • Fellowship of Reconciliation 1997-2000. Elected member of the National Council and chair of the Program Committee, nation's largest and oldest interfaith peace group.
  • Olean General Hospital Ethics Committee, 1997-date.
  • Washington West Elementary School Advisory Board, 1998-2001.
  • Faculty Senate, St. Bonaventure University, (except one year) 1988-date.
  • Olean Area Coalition for Peace and Justice, 2001-2004. Co-founded grassroots group opposed to war in Iraq and to various provisions of the Patriot and Homeland Security Acts.
  • President, Board of Directors, Montessori Children's House of Olean, 1993-1996. Pre-primary and elementary school.
  • Better Business Bureau of Western New York, 1993-1996. Trainer for conflict resolution and mediation.
  • Olean Task Force, 1987-1992. Co-founded citizen watchdog group; monitored government expenditures and actions on environmental issues.
  • WFFO-WOLN 1980-1983. Conceived and helped to execute the FM radio broadcast of jazz and NPR news in the Olean area; member of the advisory board from 1995-1998.
  • Dispute Settlement Center of the Better Business Bureau of Western New York. Mediator and arbitration, 1986-1992.
  • Olean Task Force, 1975-1978
  • Cattaraugus Community Action, board member, 1996-1997

University Service 

  • Faculty Senate, for 28 years. Chair, 2011-2016.
  • Chair, Faculty Senate Student Life Committee, once in the 1980s, once in the 1990s.
  • Chair, Faculty Senate Faculty Status Committee, two years in the 1990s, half a year in 2004.
  • Chair of the Space Utilization Committee, late 1980s one year; and chair of the Salary Inequity Committee, early 1990s.
  • Plus numerous presentations to the Friday Forums, the HEOP summer program, Residence Advisors, classrooms of other professors including Chuck Walker, Russ Jandoli, Lee Coppola.
  • Initially oversaw development of the Philosophy Department's Web pages.
  • Member of the following committees at various times over the past 20 years: Bogoni Task Force, Governance Task Force, Faculty Diversity sub-committee, advisory board of the Franciscan Center for Social Concern, various other committees and other sub-committees having to do with prioritizing, re-organizing, etc.