Michael H. Ebner is the James D. Vail III Professor of History Emeritus at Lake Forest College, where he taught from 1974 to 2007. He is best known as the author of the prizewinning Creating Chicago's North Shore: A Suburban History (1988). He has taught in the U.S. Department of Education's Teaching American History initiative in Florida, Minnesota, Illinois, and Virginia and also served as project director of Creating a Geographically Extended Class at Lake Forest College, underwritten by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. Ebner is the recipient of awards as a mentor, as a teacher, and for public service from the American Historical Association, the Chicago Tribune, the City College of New York, and Lake Forest College, and is a life trustee at the Chicago History Museum. He is currently completing a book entitled Re-mixed: Storylines from Metropolitan America.
D. W. Meinig, renowned historical geographer, supplies a useful precis: 'America as an ever changing place, an ever changing congeries of places, and ever-changing structures of places." This lecture focuses upon four distinctive locales: Greater Princeton, NJ; Naperville, IL; Gwinnett County, GA; and Irvine, CA. The American metropolis -- today the home place for a majority of Americans -- provides the frame of reference. Stretched over a broad canvass, the four case studies, drawing upon the geographical perspectives of Roger Keil, proffers an emphatic and compelling revision: "... we are facing new realities of globalized urbanization, where central cities and fringe are remixed... a different suburbia and a different city."