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James Warren “Jim” Gould

Grandfather, soldier, award-winning peace activist, longtime Claremont Colleges professor, author

Beloved father James Warren “Jim” Gould died March 13 at the age of 96.

“He was his compassionate, giving self to the very end, worrying about people who were starving, and helping us add new women to his womeninpeace.org website,” his family shared. “He will be greatly missed.”

Jim started on the path to pacifism when his buddy, Mike Contopolis was killed while they served together in World War II. He questioned, “Why him and not me?” 

His facility with languages showed up in the army, and he was lifted out of the ranks to be an interpreter for the commander, Lieutenant General Raymond S. McLain. In this role he proudly served as a tour guide to Dwight Eisenhower and Winston Churchill. After the war, the GI Bill paid for his master’s degree from the only American graduate school in international relations, the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy. This led him into the U.S. Foreign Service.

His first assignment was to the Dutch East Indies, where he learned a valuable lesson in peacemaking and was present at the signing of Indonesia’s peace agreement in 1949. His next assignment was to another war-torn country, China. “In a rare moment of realism,” as he said, the State Department sent him to Beijing, the new capital of the communist regime. But because the U.S. would not recognize China, Mr. Gould’s assignment was never fulfilled, and he was reassigned to Hong Kong as political officer and editor of the China Mainland Press.   

In 1951 he married Anne Wright Garrison—with whom he celebrated his 70th anniversary on January 6—and they immediately left for his next posting, the acting consul for the island of Sumatra in Indonesia. Their eldest son Robert was born there. 

He returned to Fletcher for a doctorate in international relations, which he received in 1955. He  wrote his thesis on Americans in Sumatra, while exploring alternative means of preventing and ending wars. The “new liberal arts college,” then called Claremont Men’s College (now Claremont McKenna College), hired him to teach international relations, comparative government, and American foreign policy. 

The family built a house in Claremont, where they raised five children. In 1960, Mr. Gould served as Fulbright Professor at the University of Munich. He later moved to CMC’s neighboring women’s school, Scripps College, where he taught courses for 35 years in international relations, cultural geography, and women and peace. 

He taught additional courses in Asian foreign policy at Claremont Graduate University, and international relations ethics at The Claremont School of Theology. 

“Here Dad found a philosophical resolution of the questions posed by the experience of three wars,” his family said. “He discovered the nonviolent alternative to war was displayed clearly by Leo Tolstoy in his favorite books, The Gospels in Brief and The Kingdom of God is Within You. Tolstoy’s disciple, Gandhi showed how the theory of nonviolent love works against racial discrimination and imperial repression. At this time, Dad found a community that had been practicing nonviolence successfully for 300 years, and joined the Society of Friends.”

In 1965 and 1966 the family lived in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, where Mr. Gould directed the Peace Corps programs in Malaya, North Borneo and Sarawak, supervising the peaceful work of more than 2,000 volunteers.

He became a Quaker in 1972. He was a draft counselor, educating draftees to become conscientious objectors. He became involved in peace research and teaching nonviolence in theory and practice. At Scripps he was attracted to unheralded women peacemakers such Jane Addams, Virginia Woolf and Helen Caldicott, bringing women such as Peace Pilgrim to class discussions. Out of this passion grew his website womeninpeace.org, which is dedicated to highlighting the achievements of more than 2,000 extraordinary, peacemaking women from around the world. The website brought together his life’s work, which he continued until his death.

After his retirement from Scripps College in 1989, the couple moved to their favorite place, Cotuit, on Cape Cod, where they had summered since the 1960s. Mr. Gould continued doing his historical research and was a great contributor to documenting of the history of Cape Cod. He chaired the Town of Barnstable Historical Commission and co-authored several books about Cape Cod, including three Images of America books on Marstons Mills, Santuit and Cotuit, and Hyannis. He also contributed to Three Centuries of the Cape Cod County Barnstable, Massachusetts 1685-1985, and to Origins of Unitarian Universalism on Cape Cod and the Islands.

In 2017, Mr. Gould was awarded The Peace Abbey’s International Courage of Conscience Award.

“We will all miss our loving father/grandfather,” his family shared. “Anne, who is now living in Seattle; Robert and Deb, living in Steamboat Springs, Colorado; Steve and Jan, living in Cotuit, Massachusetts; Kip and Joan, living in New York City; Linn and Tim, living in Seattle; and Elizabeth and Peter, also living in Seattle. 

“He was also lucky to have eight grandchildren: Steve's two sons, Lloyd and Cooper; Kip's three kids, Aidan, Devin, and Blythe; and Elizabeth's three boys, Tim, Matt and Nick, who all have fond memories of their wonderful storytelling grandfather.”

A tribute to Mr. Gould, written by David Churbuck, is at  https://churbuck.com/author/governmentcheese/.

Friends can reach Ms. Gould via email at annecotuit@gmail.com. Linn can be reached at  gouldjha@gmail.com, and Elizabeth at eagould007@gmail.com.

If you wish to make a donation in Mr. Gould’s honor, please consider the East Sandwich Friends Meeting, PO Box 198, East Sandwich, MA 02537; or the Historical Society of Santuit and Cotuit at https://www.cotuithistoricalsociety.org/donate-2018.html, or check to PO Box 1484, Cotuit, MA 02635.

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