Marc Gilbert PH.D.

College of Liberal Arts - Department of History, Humanities, and International Studies

Emeritus Professor of History
NEH Endowed Chair of World History

Marc Jason Gilbert  received a Ph.D in History from UCLA and for many years thereafter  was Professor of History and co-Director of programs in South and Southeast Asia in the University System of Georgia, which conferred upon him the title of Distinguished Professor in 1998. During that time, he  received American Institute for Indian Studies and U. S. Fulbright (Seminar) awards, and was elected to the first Executive Councils of the World History Association and of the American Institute of Afghanistan Studies. From 2006 to 2019, he was the holder of the National Endowment for the Humanities-supported Endowed Chair in World History at Hawai’i Pacific University.  Since 2008, he has been the Editor of the e-journal World History Connected, published by the George Mason University Press.  He  was elected President of the World History Association in 2012.

From the outset of his career, he sought to contribute to the new field of world history,

often by bringing a global dimension to South and Southeast Asian history in numerous papers, articles, chapters in books and books. Major works include South Asia in World History (2017), World Civilizations: The Global Experience, with Peter N. Stearns, Michael Adas and Stuart Schwartz, now in its 8th edition (2021); and Cross-Cultural Encounters in Modern World History, with Jon Davidann (Second edition, 2019). He is  editor and contributor to 3 books on the American War in Indochina that are part of the canon.   His most recent publication combines  his view of the global dimensions of that conflict with a study of its impact on Hawaii, which addresses how the war stimulated the rise of the still current Hawaiian Sovereignty Movement (“The View from the Hill: Hawaii’s Congressional Delegation and the Struggle for Peace in Vietnam and Equity at Home, 1964-1975,” in Fredrik Logevall and Brian Cuddy (eds),  The Vietnam War and the Pacific World (Chapel Hill, N.C.: University of North Carolina Press, 2022).

Prior to coming  to Hawaii Pacific University, he shared with others the role of being a “Johnny Appleseed,” in terms of spreading research and teaching world history,  At Hawaii Pacific University,  he wrote and received grants to conduct several teacher-training workshops in world history for Hawaii teachers that  featured speakers from the mainland and were supported by Professor Jon Davidann. Both he and Professor Davidann assisted in revisions of  the Hawaii Department of Education’s world history standards.  From 2009 onward, he organized international world history conferences in Cambodia, China, and Vietnam, all of which included teaching workshops, as well as engaging in similar activities at universities and academic meetings in the United States.

Gilbert retired from full time teaching in 2019 to participate in the creation of a  State-to-State relationship between Hawaii and the Indian State of Goa, centered on creating cultural, political, educational, and economic exchange. The two states have powerful common interests, ranging from oceanography to maritime strategic affairs to shared Portuguese influences. 

This project, which appealed to Hawaii administrators, led to an empowering Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) that was signed by Governor Ige with Gilbert in attendance. Gilbert returned from successful advance planning meetings in Goa just ahead of the COVID-19  epidemic, and is now awaiting its resumption, as Goa has approved of an extension of that MOU, which is now before India’s Foreign Ministry for final approval.  While shepherding  the Hawaii-Goa relationship towards its post-Covid-19 revival, Gilbert remains engaged in campus activities, such as occasional adjunct teaching, lending financial support to prizes for student scholarship, giving globalized historic tours of downtown Honolulu for entering students and for visiting military groups. 

Marc Gilbert

Emeritus Professor

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