John Carroll is Professor of Sociology at La Trobe University in Melbourne. He has degrees in mathematics, economics and sociology from the universities of Melbourne and Cambridge. His work focuses on culture, and its crucial role in the human search for meaning, with particular reference to the modern Western society. His recent books include The Western Dreaming (2001), Terror—a Meditation on the Meaning of September 11 (2002), The Wreck of Western Culture—Humanism Revisited (2004), The Existential Jesus (2007), Ego and Soul—the Modern West in Search of Meaning (2008), and Greek Pilgrimage—In Search of the Foundations of the West (2010). John Carroll is also a frequent writer of essays and newspaper articles. He delivered one of the Alfred Deakin Federation Lectures in 2001—a reflection on Australian culture titled ‘The Blessed Country’. He chaired the Panel reviewing the National Museum of Australia in 2003.