Christopher Ehret is a Distinguished Research Professor of History at UCLA whose research has dealt with a wide variety of African historical and cultural topics and a wide range of time periods. A major methodological focus in his work has been to develop the tools and techniques for reconstructing the ancient human past from the evidence of language and correlating this with other types of evidence. One long-running theme in his research has been the origins and early history of agriculture in Africa. A second major focus has been on understanding the ways in which cross-cultural interactions have shaped the courses of long-term social, cultural, and economic change across the continent. Recently he has embarked on new research into the longue durée histories of African kinship systems, and he has engaged in collaborative work with geneticists and biological anthropologists on the possibilities of correlating their findings with those of linguistics and archaeology.