In this collection of autobiographical essays, 26 prominent scholars detail their professional development, while offering insight into their lives and philosophies. With candor and humor they tell how they came to the field of economics, as well as how their views have evolved over the years. Highlights of the collection include discussions by: Irma Adelman on how World War II shaped her life; Mark Blaug on how Marxism, involvement with the Communist Party, and McCarthyism influenced his scholarship; Victor Fuchs on economic perspective and its applicability to many disciplines; Allan Meltzer on his development as a researcher; and Julian Simon on his eclectic career and untraditional path to economics. Examining the essayists' reflections affords us the opportunity to explore the question of what makes distinctive and exciting scholarship, while allowing us to probe the criteria for excellence. These thoughtful essays will be of great value to students of economics and to all those interested in personal recollections of wise and accomplished scholars.