Born in Chicago, raised in California, taught at BYU and Elmira College (in upstate New York) before moving to Asheville in 1994. Happily married since 1982, two children.
- Ph.D. Yale University, 1988 (Chinese Language and Literature)
- B.A. Brigham Young University, 1984 (Ancient Greek)
- World Civilizations to 1500
- Imperial China
- Revolutionary China
- History of Japan
- Women in China
- Humanities 124: The Ancient World
- Humanities 214: Medieval and Renaissance World
Asian history, early China, historiography,humanities, world scripture, Mormon studies
- Great Minds of the Eastern Intellectual Tradition, thirty-six part DVD lecture course for The Teaching Company, 2012.
- The Oxford History of Historical Writing, Volume I: Beginnings to AD 600 (co-editor with Andrew Feldherr, Princeton University). Oxford: Oxford University Press, forthcoming in 2010.
Understanding the Book of Mormon: A Reader’s Guide. New York: Oxford University Press, 2010.
“Introduction.” In The Book of Mormon: The Earliest Text, edited by Royal Skousen. New Haven: Yale University Press, 2009.
- The Establishment of the Han Empire and Imperial China (co-author with Anne Kinney, University of Virginia). Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 2005
- The Book of Mormon: A Reader’s Edition (editor). Urbana and Chicago: University of Illinois Press, 2003.
- Enduring Ties: Poems of Family Relationships (editor). Royalton, VT: Steerforth Press, 2003.
- Worlds of Bronze and Bamboo: Sima Qian's Conquest of History. New York: Columbia University Press, 1999..