I was born in 1954 in Lafayette, Indiana, where my father was studying for a Master's degree in physics at Purdue; grew up in the Los Angeles area, in Whittier (on Allegan Street, 1955-1959, then on Santa Gertrudes, two blocks from the old Nixon store, 1959-1965) and La Habra Heights (on Citrus Drive, 1965-1968), and the Seattle area, in Maple Valley (Ravensdale, 1968-1970, and Hobart,1970-1971), where I attended Tahoma High School (1968-1971). I lived in Finland for 14 years, first as a Youth for Understanding exchange student (1971-1972), then as a college student at the University of Jyväskylä (1974-1975), then as a lecturer in English, still at Jyväskylä (1975-1981), and finally, after taking a Ph.D. in English at the University of Washington (1983), as a professor of English (1983-1987) and translation studies (1987-1989) at the University of Tampere. (The two missing years in that chronology were my freshman year at Linfield College in McMinnville, Oregon (1972-1973), and my sophomore year at the Evergreen State College in Olympia, Washington (1973-1974).)

I have three daughters, all born in Finland: Laura (b. 1979), Sara (b. 1981), and Anna (b. 1986). In May, 2004, Laura took her M.A. in English at Indiana University and moved back to Finland, where she teaches English in a high school near Helsinki. Sara graduated from the University of Illinois in May, 2003, with a dual major in Spanish and International Studies, and plans to spend two years in the Peace Corps. Anna is a freshman at Bradley University in Peoria, Illinois.

In 1989 I was hired to teach critical theory in the English department at the University of Mississippi. Except for the year and a half from January 1999 to summer 2000, that's been my job ever since:

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