Gail M. Presbey
Philosophy Department
University of Detroit Mercy

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Welcome to this site and you are welcome to download and read any of the articles below! This is not a complete list of my publications. For that, please visit my online CV. Here, only the articles that are available for free online are listed, and they are listed according to topic (not according to publication type and chronology as in the CV). Some are pdf’s of the published version (when allowed by copyright), and others are pre-publication versions of the text (according to publisher’s rules). Some of the “full text” links will take you to a page on PhilPapers, a nonprofit website based in Canada and affiliated with the American Philosophical Association, where you will have a chance to download the article.

Shortcut menu – Topics:

VIDEOS – Presentations


Africa – Philosophy, History and Politics, General

African Sage Philosophy

Gandhi and Nonviolence

Social and Political Philosophy – Hannah Arendt and others

Cross-Cultural philosophy – especially East Asian, Latin American, Native American

VIDEOS – Presentations

Presented a talk and power point (via Zoom) on “How Gandhi drew inspiration and learned nonviolent resistance techniques from women,” as part of a panel, “International Webinar on Mahatma Gandhi,” Visva-Bharati University, Santiniketan, India, Aug. 30, 2020,  posted Sept. 2, 2020, (begins around 1 hr 30 min mark after presentations by Vice Chancellor Prof. Bidyat Chakrabarty and Prof. Sanjay Lal)

Presented a talk (via Zoom) “Historical Background for the Causes of Central American Migration,” for Our Mother of Perpetual Help and Christ Our Light Parishes, MI, July, 2020. or 

Presented a talk (via Zoom) on “The History of U.S. Policy with Central America” for a program, “The Immigration Crisis and our Faith,” sponsored by Alianza Americas, Strangers No Longer – Michigan and CLASA, June 2020. My part is ten minutes long and begins around the 30 minute mark.

Week-long course on African History, six sessions, July 6-11, 2015, Great Huts, Port Antonio, Jamaica. Find radio interview about the course with “Sista P” (Pauline Petinaud) of “Spiritual Vibrations” show, STYLESFM radio, July 9, 2015, 

Public lecture in honor of World Philosophy Day, “Revolution and/or Evolution? Grace Lee Boggs’ Sustainable Activism for Detroit,” University of Windsor Philosophy Department and Philosophical Association of Windsor event held at Phog Lounge, Windsor, November 2012. 

Video related to our book, R. Greg Moses and Gail M. Presbey (Eds.), Peace Philosophy and Public Life:  Commitments, Crises, and Concepts for Engaged Thinking, Value Inquiry Book Series, vol. 268, Rodopi Publishers, 2014.


Africa – Philosophy, History and Politics, General

“Sophie Oluwole’s Contribution to African Philosophy,” Hypatia: A Journal of Feminist Philosophy, 35/2 (Spring/May 2020), 231-242. [abstract] [full text]

“Women’s Empowerment: The Insights of Wangari Maathai,” Journal of Global Ethics, 9/3 (December 2013), 277-292.  [abstract] [full text]

“Should Women Love ‘Wisdom’? Evaluating the Ethiopian Wisdom Tradition,” Research in African Literatures, 30:2 (Summer 1999), pp.165–181, republished in Gutema, Bekele and Charles Verharen (eds.), African Philosophy in Ethiopia (Philosophy in Africa Now series). Addis Ababa: Addis Ababa University Philosophical Studies, 2012, pp. 159-181. The same reprint appears in a U.S. published version of the book, by Gutema, Bekele and Charles Verharen (eds.), African Philosophy in Ethiopia: Ethiopian Philosophical Studies, II. Washington, D.C.: Council for Research in Values and Philosophy, 2013, 139-158. [full text]

“Strategic Nonviolence in Africa: Reasons for Its Embrace and Later Abandonment by Nkrumah, Nyerere, and Kaunda.” In David Boersema and Katy Gray Brown, ed. Spiritual and Political Dimensions of Nonviolence and Peace. Amsterdam: Rodopi, 2006, pp. 75–101. [abstract] [full text]

“The Struggle for Recognition in the Philosophy of Axel Honneth, Applied to the Current South African Situation and Its Call for an ‘African Renaissance,’” Philosophy and Social Criticism, 29:5 (2003), pp. 537–561. [abstract] [full text]

“Unfair Distribution of Resources in Africa: What Should Be Done about the Ethnicity Factor?” Human Studies, 26:1 (January 2003), 21–40. [abstract] [full text]

“Maasai Concepts of Personhood: The Roles of Recognition, Community, and Individuality,” International Studies in Philosophy, 34:2 (2002), pp. 57–82. [abstract] [full text]

“Akan Chiefs and Queen Mothers in Contemporary Ghana: Examples of Democracy, or Accountable Authority?” International Journal of African Studies, 3:1 (Fall 2001), 63–83. [abstract] [full text]

Gail M. Presbey and George F. McLean, “Foreword: In Memory: The Significance of Claude Sumner SJ’s Contribution to African Philosophy,” in Gutema, Bekele and Charles Verharen (eds.), African Philosophy in Ethiopia: Ethiopian Philosophical Studies, II. Washington, D.C.: Council for Research in Values and Philosophy, 2013, vii-xiv. [abstract] [full text]

“H. Odera Oruka on Moral Reasoning,” Journal of Value Inquiry, 34:4 (December 2000), pp. 517–528. [abstract] [full text]

“African Philosophers on Global Wealth Distribution,” in Gail M. Presbey,, ed. Thought and Practice in African Philosophy. Nairobi, Kenya: Konrad Adenauer Foundation, 2002, pp. 283–300. [abstract] [full text]

“Maasai Rejection of the Western Paradigm of Development: A Foucaultian Analysis.” In Cheryl Hughes and Yeager Hudson, ed. Cultural Integrity and World Community. Lewiston, N.Y.: Edwin Mellen Press, 2000, 339-359. [abstract] [full text]

 “Security Through Mutual Understanding and Co-existence or Military Might?: Somali and U.S. Perspectives” in Matt Meyer (Ed.),  Seeds Bearing Fruit: Pan African Peace Action in the 21st Century, Africa World Press, 2011, pp. 323-351. [abstract] [full text]

“The Best of Both Worlds: Philosophy in African Languages and English Translation,” APA Newsletter on Indigenous Philosophy 16/2 (Spring 2017), 7-14. [full text]

Book review of Peter Little, Economic and Political Reform in Africa: Anthropological Perspectives. (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2014), in Ethique & Economique/ Ethics and Economics 13/1 (2016), 94-95. (online)

 Book review essay on Pedro Machado, Oceans of Trade: South Asian Merchants, Africa and the Indian Ocean, c. 1750-1850. Cambridge University Press, 2014. For Nidan: International Journal for the Study of Hinduism, 27/1-2 (July/December 2015), 71-79 (online). Republished as a book chapter in Kalpana Hiralal (Ed.), Global Hindu Diaspora: Historical and Contemporary Perspectives, Delhi: Manohar Publishers, 2016, 177-188.

 Jonathan Reynolds, Sovereignty and Struggle: Africa and Africans in the Era of the Cold War, 1945-1994. (African World Histories Series) (New York: Oxford University Press), in World History Connected, 12/3 (October 2015),

The entire book, Thought and Practice in African Philosophy (Konrad Adenaeur Foundation, 2002), for which I am first co-editor, is available online for free at:

Download instructions: for any chapter you choose (and you could begin with the first and do this for each chapter), click "view" right underneath the chapter title. It takes you to a new page where you see the first page of the chapter. But there is a box on the upper right hand side that says "This article is available for free preview" and underneath that it shows a blue box that says "Show document." Click on "Show document." The pdf of the chapter opens. You can read it online just then, or download for future use. To download, hover in the upper right hand corner of the screen, some icons will show up, one of them has an arrow pointing down. That is the download icon. Click on that. It should ask you where you want to save it. Create a new file folder on your computer, and download all the chapters to that file folder. Each time you download you may want to rename the file with the name of the author, so you don't get them mixed up. In this way you can get the whole book. By the way, here is a book review of of Thought and Practice in African Philosophy by  Mkhwanazi, E. F., and M. B. Ramose in Tydskrif vir letterkunde 42: 2 (2005), 161–175,

 Gail Presbey, Sandra Ochieng’-Springer (University of West Indies at Cave Hill Campus, Barbados) and Kunbi Adefule (Cornell University), “Report on the International Colloquium, ‘Toward a New Pan-Africanism:  Deploying Anthropology, Archaeology, History and Philosophy in the Service of Africa and the Diaspora,’” University of the West Indies, Mona Campus, Kingston, Jamaica, April 24-25, 2014. In the American Philosophical Association Newsletter on Philosophy and the Black Experience 14/2 (Spring 2015), 1-5.

African Sage Philosophy

“Sage Philosophy,” Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy, September 2014. Online at: 

“African Sage Philosophy and Socrates: Midwifery and Method,” International Philosophical Quarterly, 42:2, Issue 166 (June 2002), pp. 177–192. [abstract] [full text]

“Kenyan Sages on Equality of Sexes,” Thought and Practice: A Journal of the Philosophical Association of Kenya (PAK) Special Issue: Odera Oruka Seventeen Years On. New Series, 4/2, (December 2012), pp.111-145. [abstract] [full text]

“Bâtir une «culture nationale» interethnique et intergénérationnelle au Kenya”/ “Attempts to create ‘National Culture’ including Inter-ethnic and Inter-generational Community in Kenya,” Diogène/Diogenes: Revue Internationale des Sciences Humaines special issue on “Community and Africana Philosophy,” Vol. 59, issue # 235-236, 62-80, 2011/3. (The same article is also published in English, but only the French version is available for free download). [abstract- English] [abstract – French] [full text]

“Sage Philosophy: Criteria that Distinguish it from Ethnophilosophy and Make It a Unique Approach within African Philosophy,” Philosophia Africana, 10:2 (August 2007), 127-160. [abstract] [full text]

“Sage Philosophy and Critical Thinking: Creatively Coping with Negative Emotions,” International Journal of Philosophical Practice, 2:1 (Spring 2004), pp. 1–20. [abstract] [full text]

“Who Counts as a Sage? Problems in the Further Implementation of Sage Philosophy,” Quest: Philosophical Discussions, XI:1&2 (1997), pp. 53–65. [abstract] [full text – Quest]  See also the World Congress of Philosophy website: [full text- World Congress]

“Is Elijah Masinde a Sage-Philosopher? The Dispute between H. Odera Oruka and Chaungo Barasa.” In Kai Kresse and Anke Graness, eds. Sagacious Reasoning: Henry Odera Oruka in Memoriam. Frankfurt: Peter Lang, 1997, pp. 195–209. [abstract] [full text]

Akan-Häuptlinge und Königsmütter im heutigen Ghana: Beispiele für Demokratie und verantwortliche Autoritäten?”  (Akan Chiefs and Queen Mothers in Contemporary Ghana: Examples of Democracy, or Accountable Authority?), translated by Nausikaa Schirilla, Polylog: Zeitschrift für interkulturelles Philosophieren, 1:2 (1998), pp. 43–57. [abstract] [full text - German]

“Ways in Which Oral Philosophy is Superior to Written Philosophy: A Look at Odera Oruka’s Rural Sages,” APA Newsletter on Philosophy and the Black Experience (Fall 1996), pp. 6–10. [abstract] [full text]

Gandhi and Nonviolence

“Gandhi’s Many Influences and Collaborators,” in Comparative Studies of South Asia, Africa, and the Middle East, 35/2 (August 2015), 360-369. [abstract] [full text]

“Gandhi: The Grandfather of Conflict Transformation,” in Emiko Noma, Tom Hastings, and Rhea DuMont (Eds.), Conflict Transformation:  New Voices, New Directions, McFarland Press, 2013, pp. 213-224. [abstract] [full text]

“Gandhi, Dube and Abdurahman: Collaborations to end Injustice in South Africa,” in World History Bulletin, 32/1 (Spring 2016), 5-11. [abstract] [full text]

Forthcoming, “Between Gandhi and Black Lives Matter: The Interreligious Roots of Civil Rights Activism.” Review of Sarah Azaransky, This Worldwide Struggle: Religion and the International Roots of the Civil Rights Movement. Oxford University Press, 2017, in The Acorn: Philosophical Studies on Pacifism and Nonviolence, 19/2 (2020). [abstract] [full text]

“Dorothy Day’s Pursuit of Public Peace Through Word and Action,” in  R. Greg Moses and Gail Presbey (Eds.), Peace Philosophy and Public Life:  Commitments, Crises, and Concepts for Engaged Thinking, Value Inquiry Book Series, vol. 268, Rodopi Publishers, 2014, 17-40. [abstract] [full text]

“Odera Oruka and Mohandas Gandhi on Reconciliation,” Polylog: Forum für interkulturelles Philosophieren, 34/2 (2015), 187-208. [full text]

“Franz Jagerstatter,” On the Edge: A Detroit Catholic Worker Newsletter (Winter 2008), pp. 6-7,

 “Walking with Gandhi in India,” Concerned Philosophers for Peace Newsletter (Fall 2006), pp. 1, 12–17.

Review of Fred Wilcox, ed., Disciples and Dissidents: Prison Writings of the Prince of Peace Plowshares. In Catholic Peace Voice, XXVII:1 (Spring 2002), p. 20.  The article is also on the Jonah House website,,%20Disciples%20&%20Dissidents.htm  

Review of Bill Sutherland and Matt Meyer, Guns and Gandhi in Africa: Pan-African Insights on Nonviolence, Armed Struggle, and Liberation in Africa. Long version In Philosophia Africana, 5:2 (August 2002), pp. 85-94; shorter version in Polylog: Forum für interkulturelles Philosophieren, 2:1 (2001), pp. 1–17, ; and shortest version published in The Catholic Worker (September–October 2001). DOI: 10.5840/philafricana2002528or

Review of Thomas E. Ricks, Fiasco: The American Military Adventure in Iraq. New York: Penguin, 2006. In Concerned Philosophers for Peace Newsletter, 26:2 (Fall 2006), pp. 3–6. [full text]

Kathleen Maas Weigert and Robin J. Crews, eds., Teaching for Justice: Concepts and Models for Service-Learning in Peace Studies. In Concerned Philosophers for Peace Newsletter, 23:1–2 (Spring–Fall 2003), pp. 7–9. [full text]

Social and Political Philosophy – Hannah Arendt and others

“Challenges of Founding a New Government in Iraq,” Constellations: an International Journal of Critical and Democratic Theory, 12:4 (December 2005), pp. 521–541. [abstract] [full text]

“Critics of Boers or Africans? Arendt’s Treatment of South Africa in the Origins of Totalitarianism.” In Emmanuel C. Eze, ed. Postcolonial African Philosophy: A Critical Reader. Cambridge, Mass.: Blackwell, 1997, pp. 162–180. [abstract] [full text]

“Hannah Arendt on Power, Consent, and Coercion: Some Parallels to Gandhi” Acorn: Journal of the Gandhi- King Society (Fall–Winter 1992–1993), pp. 24–32. [abstract] [full text]

“Arendt on Language and Lying in Politics: Her Insights Applied to the ‘War on Terror’ and the U.S. Occupation of Iraq,” Peace Studies Journal 1/1 (November 2008), pp. 32-62.   [full text]

 “Mahmood Mamdani’s Analysis of Colonialism Applied to the U.S.-led War on Iraq,” Polylog: Forum for Intercultural Philosophy, 5 (2004). [abstract] [full text]

“Criticisms of Multiparty Democracy: Parallels between Wamba-dia-Wamba and Arendt,” New Political Science, 20:1 (1998), pp. 35–52. [abstract] [full text]

“Globalization and the Crisis in Detroit,” in Perspectives on Global Development and Technology, 15/1-2 (2015), 261-277. [abstract] [full text]

“Simone Weil y el trabajo manual: Sus ideas Aplicadas al Actual Trabajo de Explotación”, translation by Ada Frey y Karina Crivelli, Centro Para La Justica Global, posted on the web at:

“Simone Weil On Labor: Her Insights Applied to Current Sweatshop Labor,” Center for Global Justice, 2005, on web at:

Cross-Cultural philosophy -- especially East Asian, Latin American, Native American

“Antón Donoso, in memorium (1932-2018),” Inter-American Journal of Philosophy 9/1 (Spring 2018). [Full text]

“Teaching ‘Philosophy of Feminism’ from a Global Perspective,” in APA Newsletter on Feminism and Philosophy, 12/1 (Fall 2012), 4-9. [abstract] [full text]

“Teaching about Racism and Sexism in Introduction to Philosophy Classes,” APA Newsletter on Feminism and Philosophy 7:2 (Spring 2008) pp.  5-13. [abstract] [full text]

“SOA Watch Delegation to Honduras, May 2011” in Radical Philosophy Association Newsletter New issue, no. 8 (November 2011), pp. 9-12. Find at: 

“Blind to Suffering:  The James Carney, S.J., Story,” in Conversations on Jesuit Higher Education vol. 40 (Fall 2011), pp. 56-57,