Both the birth and death of a stellar system are areas of key scientific importance. Whether it's understanding the process of planetary formation in a star's early years, or uncovering the cause of the enormous mass-loss that takes place during a star's dying moments, a key to scientific understanding lies in the inner few AU of the circumstellar environment. Corresponding to scales of 10s of milli-arcseconds, these observations pose a huge technical challenge due to the high angular-resolutions and contrasts required. A major stumbling block is the problem of the Earth's own atmospheric turbulence. The other difficulty is that precise calibration is required to combat the extremely high contrast ratios and high resolutions faced. By taking advantage of the fact that starlight scattered by dust in the circumstellar region is polarized, differential polarimetry can help achieve this calibration. Spectral features can also be utilized.