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Don Barrett

Don Barrett

Professor of Sociology; Retired

Don Barrett

Don Barrett retired in Fall, 2012, from the faculty in Sociology and from being chapter president for the California Faculty Association. His post-retirement scholarship and activism continue to focus on inequality, particularly for working class sexual minorities. He, along with other retired faculty, was instrumental in creating the CSUSM Retirees Association and the Emeritus and Retirees Committee of the Pacific Sociological Association.  His most recent scholarship has been for the LGBTQ/Sexual Minority section of the International Encyclopedia of Social and Behavioral Sciences 2nd edition, released in 2015.


Like many at CSU San Marcos, Don’s education is an amalgam of courses from all over the place, from exploring multiple majors, and from credit for military experience.  Majors explored over the years include Accounting, Philosophy, Library Science, Computer Science, and Sociology.  Schools include (in chronological order): North Florida Community College; Jacksonville University; Defense Language Institute Monterey; University of Maryland Extension in Sinop, Turkey; University of West Florida; Binghamton University; University at Buffalo; Indiana University; UC Berkeley.  All of this wandering and exploring resulted in just the following degrees:

Education History
Year Info
1993    Ph.D. in Sociology; Indiana University
Graduate minor: Medical Anthropology
Dissertation: “The Influence of Multiple Identities
on the Health Behaviors of Gay Men”
1975    M.S. in Computer Science; Binghamton University.
Comprehensive Exam, no thesis required.
1972    B.A. in Sociology; University of West Florida (Pensacola)


Having worked as a statistical programmer in public health, Don is published extensively on multiple subjects including community interventions to prevent heart disease, innovative strategies for treating cocaine abuse, rates of sexually transmitted diseases, and on sexuality, drug use, and HIV.  At San Marcos, Don’s research focused on the stigmas associated with same-sex sexuality, with a specific focus on the experiences of working-class men who are gay or same-sex active.  Post-retirement his research activities address issues related to sexual minority aging, male-male sexual interaction in public settings, and tensions between assimilation and sexual liberation perspectives in gay culture.   See the vitae for a complete list of publications and activities.


At CSUSM Don taught multiple courses on social experiences related to health, with a focus on sexuality and on alcohol and drug use. 

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