David Ludden is Professor of History at New York University. In 1968, he spent a year as a public health intern in a village near Chennai. He then studied Tamil literature and published translations of Tamil poetry, before shifting to studies of economic and social history, focusing first on the Indian peninsula and then on Bangladesh and northeast India. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania in 1978, and he served on the Penn faculty from 1981 until 2007, before moving to NYU. He has chaired the Penn Department of South Asian Studies, the NYU Department of History, and South Asia programs at the Social Science Research Council and the Fulbright Senior Scholars program. In 2002, he served as President of the Association for Asian Studies. His publications include four edited volumes, three monographs, and dozens of academic articles and chapters. His current work is slowly adding up to a set of books and internet resources covering very long-term histories of empire, capitalism, globalization, and the urbanization of agrarian environments in Asia.