History is an encounter with the past, and the past is a history of encounters. Encounters in World History is designed to introduce students to both of these sorts of encounters. Using primary and visual sources, the authors employ the encounter theme as a fundamental organizing principle. By nesting sources in thematically integrated chapters, comparison and analysis of sources can be more substantive, while also providing more internal structure for instructors. At the same time, this is a world history reader, and it follows a chronological format. The material has been presented in such a way that instructors can craft their own courses, emphasizing the aspects they think most important. Chapters are organized so that the general theme is presented in a chapter introduction and then revisited in the separate introductions to specific readings. The readers can be used to highlight preferred eras, cultural zones, or themes, or a unique mixture of all three.