About the Author, Martin W. Lewis

I am a senior lecturer in the Department of History at Stanford University. I teach courses on world geography, world history, and the history of Southeast Asia, and I conduct research on the foundational ideas of global geo-history. I live in a condominium on the Stanford campus with my wife, Kären Wigen (professor of Japanese History), our children, Evan and Eleanor, my elderly parents, Wayne and Nell Lewis, and our two cats, Midnight and Sunshine.

I was born on the Oregon coast, but moved at age two to Ygnacio Valley at the foot of Mount Diablo in northern California's Bay Area. At thirteen I moved with my family to the small town of San Andreas in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada in Calaveras County. I attended the University of California at Santa Cruz as an undergraduate, and did my graduate work in geography at the University of California at Berkeley. My first academic position was at the George Washington University in Washington DC, my second at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina. In 2002 I returned to Northern California, trailing my spouse to accept a position as lecturer at Stanford University.

Every time I see an adult on a bicycle, I no longer despair for the future of the human race.
H.G. Wells