Albert L.E. Gastmann, Ph.D.
Dr. Gastmann, a professor at Trinity, grew up traveling around the world. Bert and his brother spent their childhoods living wherever their father’s job as a Dutch ambassador took them, including Indonesia, Iran, Canada, Germany, and the United States.
Bert served in the Netherlands Armed Services during World War II and then at the Netherlands Embassy in Chungking, China. He returned to New York after his tour of duty to complete his education at Columbia College, receiving his B.A. in 1949. He taught in Lima, Peru and returned to Columbia for his M.A. in international relations, which he received in 1953. He then began teaching modern languages at Trinity. He was fluent in Dutch, German, French, Spanish, and English. He obtained his Ph.D. from Columbia in 1963, and became a full professor of political science at Trinity in 1975, a position he held until his retirement in 1990.
Dr. Gastmann also spent four years teaching in Curaçao in the 1970s and a number of semesters teaching European and third-world politics at Trinity’s campus in Rome, Italy. Much of his scholarly work was focused on international relations and the politics and history of the Caribbean. He was a founding member of the Caribbean Studies Association of the United States and a member of Pi Gamma Mu and Delta Phi Alpha honor societies. He is the author and co-author of many articles and books, including The Politics of Surinam, The Netherlands Antilles, Historical Dictionary of the French and Netherlands Antilles, and A History of Credit and Power in the Western World.
Dr. Gastmann enjoyed teaching and took a keen interest in his students, staying a part of their lives after graduation. He passed away in 2007 at the age of 87.