Yi-Fu Tuan was born in China in 1930 and was educated in Australia, the Philippines, England, and the United States. He holds degrees from the University of Oxford (B.A., 1951; M.A., 1955) and the University of California, Berkeley (Ph.D., 1957). He has taught at Indiana University, the University of New Mexico, the University of Toronto, and the University of Minnesota. In 1984 he became Professor of Geography at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, where, since 1985, he has been the J.K. Wright Professor and Vilas Research Professor.

Professor Tuan was a Guggenheim Fellow in 1968-1969. In 1973 he received an Award for Meritorious Contribution to Geography from the Association of American Geographers. He was elected a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in 1986. In 1992 Professor Tuan was elected “Best Professor” by the Wisconsin Student Association and received a Certificate of Appreciation for “Special Contributions to Student Lives” from the Interfraternity Council and the Panhellenic Association of the University of Wisconsin, Madison. The Interfraternity Council also presented him with a Professor Appreciation Award for Excellence in Teaching in 1994.

Professor Tuan has delivered the following endowed public lectures: Morrison Lecture, Australia National University (1975); Matthew Vassar Lecture, Vassar College (1976); Special University Lecture, University of London (1980); R. J. Russell Memorial Lecture, Louisiana State University (1982); Alcan Lecture on Architecture, Vancouver, British Columbia (1998); McMartin Memorial Lecture, Carleton University, Canada (1985); Research Lectures, National Taiwan University (1988); Hooker Lecture, McMaster University (1992); Landsdowne Lecture, University of Victoria (1994); Carl Sauer Memorial Lecture, University of California, Berkeley (1996); and the Alexander von Humboldt Lecture, University of California, Los Angeles (1997).

His books include Pediments in Southeastern Arizona (1959), The Hydrologic Cycle and the Wisdom of God (1968), Topophilia (1974), Space and Place (1977), Dominance and Affection (1984), The Good Life (1986), Passing Strange and Wonderful (1993), Cosmos and Hearth (1996), and Escapism (forthcoming, October 1998). Professor Tuan has also served as Delegate to the American Council of Learned Societies from the Association of American Geographers.

The 1998 Charles Homer Haskins Lecture