The idea for an international symposium on the interstellar medium was first discussed at the University of Wyoming during the summer of 1984. It was obvious that the outstanding natural beauty of the Teton mountain range in northwestern Wyoming must be matched by a meeting with the broadest appeal to the astronomical community. If the meeting was to produce a book, it must likewise be an important contribution to the astronomical literature. It was for these reasons that early in the discussions, it was decided that the University should host a "school". with the invited speakers presenting tutorials on a broad range of topics involving the interstellar medium. The symposium proceedings would then be a compilation of the written versions of these presentations. It has been nearly a decade since Lyman Spitzer published his classic text on the interstellar medium and we felt the need for a school and book that would focus on the recent developments in our understanding of the inter stellar medium. Thus, we view this two-volume set as an adjunct text to Spitzer's book.