Labyrinths explores the origins of thirteen books I have written in the past few decades, texts that have helped to define the emerging parameters of relief operations that inevitably follow armed conflicts or natural disasters. Widely used in international training programs, these books provide practical, specific approaches and solutions-to complex problems in a multidisciplinary field. But how, and why, and even when certain editorial decisions were made required a deeper probe, and Labyrinths looks back at the formative influences of childhood, adolescence, education, and early professional experiences. Many of the pieces in this volume predate the Fordham University Press Humanitarian Book series. They were written in a library in our beach home, overlooking sand dunes and the Atlantic Ocean, with the rhythmic sound of waves and bird song as background music. In the quiet isolation of a seaside town I find respite from a busy life devoted to clinical medicine, public health, teaching, travel, and a global network of international humanitarian assistance projects. This book is dedicated "For the People of Point Lookout," who have respected my privacy while I develop initiatives that have spread from this tiny hamlet to reach millions of vulnerable people around the world.