Global Peace and Social Justice

Students in a lecture

Mahatma Gandhi Lecture Series

The Mahatma Gandhi Lectures on Nonviolence was established at McMaster University under the direction of the Centre for Peace Studies, to make the value and strategies of nonviolence widely known, and to develop the concept and practice of nonviolence through intellectual analysis and criticism, dialogue, debate and experimentation. 


The series is named after Mahatma Gandhi to honour his role in the revitalization and development of nonviolence. The lectureship was initiated by funding predominantly from the Indo-Canadian community in 1993 and formalized in 1996. Each year, a respected analyst or practitioner of nonviolence is invited to McMaster to deliver one or more lectures or workshops on nonviolence that is in the interest of a community audience.  


This publicly-funded endowed annual lecture is a testimony to McMaster’s long-standing engagement with the wider Hamilton community of peace and human rights activists, community organizations and advocacy groups.


If you would like more information on this Lecture Series or have suggestions of speakers, please contact the Director of the Centre for Peace Studies, Dr. Chandrima Chakraborty, chandri@mcmaster.ca.

Featured Lecture

Featured Lecture

"Climate Change Refugee Migration" with Dr. Robert McLeman, Wilfrid Laurier University

Robert McLeman is Professor of Geography and Environmental Studies at Wilfrid Laurier University. A former diplomat, Dr. McLeman is an influential scholar and researcher of how climate change affects the migration and displacement of people in Canada and around the world.

Past Lectures

  • 2023 Robert McLeman, “Climate Change Refugee Migration”
  • 2022 Mustafa Santiago Ali, “Climate Justice”
  • 2021 Dawn Martin-Hill and Dr. Rick Monture, “Environmental Responsibility, Social Justice, and the Haudenosaunee Great Law of Peace”
  • 2020 Reverend James Lawson and The Hon. Jean Augustine, “From Civil Rights to Black Lives Matter”
  • 2019 Ramachandra Guha, historian and Gandhi biographer, India, “Four Arguments With Gandhi”
  • 2019 Leymah Gbowee, 2011 Nobel Peace Laureate and Peace activist, Liberia, “Women, Peace and Security”
  • 2017 Shabana Azmi, Social Activist, India, “Towards a Violence Free Society for Women”
  • 2017 Mary Jo Leddy, Founder, Romero House, Canada, “Refugee : Why are we here – reflection on Canada and Refugees at Canada 150”
  • 2013 Ela Bhatt, President Self-Employed Women’s Association, India, “Women and Poverty: The Hidden Face of Violence with Social Consent”
  • 2012 Chris Hedges, Senior fellow, The Nation Institute, USA, “Days of Destruction, Days of Revolt”
  • 2011 Richard Falk, Distinguished Emeritus Professor, Princeton University
  • 2009 Rajmohan Gandhi, Professor, biographer and grandson of Mahatma Gandhi
  • 2008 Narayan Desai, Gandhian Scholar, India, “Understanding Gandhi Comprehensively”
  • 2007 Satish Kumar, Ecologist/Activist, UK
  • 2005 Sulak Sivaraksa, Peace Activist, Thailand
  • 2003 Acharya Ramamurti, Social Activist, India
  • 2002 Lowitija O’Donoghue, Elder of Australian Aboriginal Nation
  • 2001 Fatima Meer, University of Natal, South Africa
  • 2000 Medha Patkar, Human Rights Activist and Social Worker, India
  • 1999 Douglas Roche, OC, Senator, Ottawa, Canada
  • 1998 Adam Curle, Founding Chair, Dept. of Peace Studies, Bradford University, UK
  • 1997 Gene Sharp, Director, The Albert Einstein Institution, Cambridge, Mass., USA
  • 1996 Ovide Mercredi, National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations, Canada
  • 1993 Karan Singh, Statesman and Scholar, India: Special Gandhi Peace Festival Inaugural Lecture: Tri-Centenary of Gandhi, Aurbindo and Vivekananda (1893-1993)
Banner of lecture hall Banner of lecture hall

Contribute to Mahatma Gandhi Lecture Series on Nonviolence