About The Authors

david and john

David C. Major, Ph.D.

Dr. David C. Major is Senior Research Scientist at the Columbia University Earth Institute’s Center for Climate Systems Research. He completed his undergraduate work at Wesleyan University and the London School of Economics, and received the Ph.D. in Economics from Harvard.  Dr. Major has been a faculty member at MIT and at Clark University, a Visiting Fellow at Clare Hall, Cambridge, a senior planner with the New York City Water Supply System, and Program Director for Global Environmental Change at the Social Science Research Council.

He is the author, co-author or co-editor of twelve books on natural resources planning, environmental management, biography and literary studies.  His principal scientific research focus at Columbia  is the adaptation of urban infrastructure to global climate change.  He and his younger brother John have collaborated on three books: William P. Major: A Bergenfield Life (with their older brother, William Demarest Major); 100 One-Night Reads; and A Huguenot on the Hackensack.

John S. Major, Ph.D.

John S. Major graduated from Haverford College and did graduate work at Harvard University, where he was awarded the degree of Ph.D. in History and East Asian Languages. Following three years’ residential research in Taiwan and  Japan, he joined the faculty of Dartmouth College, where he taught East Asian history from 1971 to 1984; during that period he lived for an additional year in Japan, a year in Indonesia, and a year as a Visiting Fellow at Clare Hall, Cambridge University. Moving to New York City, he served as director of the China Council of the Asia Society from 1984 to 1987. From 1988 to 2001 he worked in the publishing industry as Senior Editor of the Book-of-the-Month Club, concurrently remaining active as an independent scholar, writer, and editor. He holds an appointment as Senior Lecturer at the China Institute, New York, and is a member of the Columbia University Faculty Seminar on Early China. A specialist in the intellectual history of early China, he is the author, co-author, or editor of nearly thirty books spanning the fields of East Asia, world literature, and local and family history. He and his brother David have collaborated on three books: William P. Major: A Bergenfield Life (with their older brother, William Demarest Major); 100 One-Night Reads; and A Huguenot on the Hackensack.

Selected other books by David C. Major:

  • Multiobjective Water Resource Planning (Washington, D.C.: American Geophysical Union, Water Resources Monograph 4, 1977).
  • Lourdes Arizpe, Priscilla Stone, and David C. Major, eds., Population and Environment: Rethinking the Debate (Boulder, CO: Westview Press, 1994).
  • Kenneth D. Frederick, David C. Major, and Eugene Z. Stakhiv, eds., Climate Change and Water Resources Planning Criteria (Dordrecht, The Netherlands: Kluwer Academic Publishers, 1997, published concurrently as a special issue of Climatic Change 37:1 (September 1997).

Selected other books by John S. Major:

  • John S. Major, Heaven and Earth in Early Han Thought: Chapters Three, Four, and Five of the Huainanzi. Albany: SUNY Press, 1993.
  • John S. Major and Constance A. Cook, Defining Chu: Image and Reality in Ancient China. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 1999. Paperback reprint, 2004.
  • Joseph Needham, Lu Gwei-djen, John H. Combridge, and John S. Major, The Hall of Heavenly Records: Korean Astronomical Instruments and Clocks, 1380-1780. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1986. Paperback reprint edition, Cambridge University Press, 2004.
  • Clifton Fadiman and John S. Major, The New Lifetime Reading Plan. New York: HarperCollins, 1997.
  • Katharine Washburn and John S. Major, eds., World Poetry: An Anthology of Verse from Antiquity to Our Time. New York: W. W. Norton & Co. and The Book-of-the-Month Club, 1998.
  • Yeshi Dorjee and John S. Major, The Three Boys and Other Buddhist Folktales from Tibet. Honolulu: University of Hawai’i Press, 2006.
  • John S. Major, The Silk Route: 7,000 Miles of History. Illustrated by Stephen Fieser. New York: HarperCollins Children’s Books, 1995.