Celebrating 40 Years of Orion

This year Orion celebrates 40 years of publishing the best in environmental writing! Deeply rooted in a history of storytelling about the natural world and conservation, we are continuing to expand our canopy with writing and art reflecting the diverse people and landscapes that make up our cultural ecosystems.

The occasion will be marked with a virtual 40th Anniversary celebration held on Tuesday, June 14th, at 6 p.m ET. Join us and continue to support new thinking about how humanity might live on Earth justly, sustainably, and joyously.

The event will include the inauguration of two new award programs. The Orion Barry Lopez Award for Achievements in Letters and Environments, which celebrates authors whose work reveals a complex and compassionate relationship with the natural world, will be presented to Margaret Atwood by Rebecca Solnit. The Orion Jane Goodall Award for Inspiring Courage in Action, which celebrates activists and educators whose voices provoke environmental stewardship, will be presented to Vanessa Nakate. The Anniversary event will also include appearances by Camille T. Dungy, Ross Gay, Lauren Groff, Major Jackson, Aimee Nezhukumatathil, Emily Raboteau, Jeff VanderMeer, Alice Wong, and many others.

The magazine’s landmark 40th anniversary issue, an exploration of the tangled origins of the Anthropocene, will be released in June. Contributors include Jane Hirshfield, Samantha Hunt, Amy Irvine, Lacy Johnson, Maira Kalman, Barbara Kingsolver, Elizabeth Kolbert, Drew Lanham, Ken Liu, Kyo Maclear, Andri Snær Magnason, John McPhee, Lulu Miller, Lydia Millet, Marie Mutsuki Mockett, Maria Popova, Elizabeth Rush, Ella Frances Sanders, Scott Russell Sanders, Martin Shaw, Meera Subramanian, Pitchaya Sudbanthad, Arthur Sze, and Krista Tippett.

“It’s been forty years since the publication of its first issue, and Orion has never felt more relevant,” says Executive Director Amy Brady. “In an age of staggering planetary change, this magazine is a leader in exploring how we can all take better care of the earth–and each other.”

Orion’s Editor in Chief, Sumanth Prabhaker, adds that “Orion has not only published some of the finest and most influential writers and artists of the last 40 years, but also created a platform for voices that haven’t historically been included in American literary culture. In the years to come, Orion will continue to celebrate the possibilities of environmental storytelling by questioning and diversifying the ways in which we write about our world.”

Register now for this completely free celebratory event! To register yourself and others, as well as make a donation or bid on auction items, visit our 40th Anniversary website.

This is a collection of Orion Staff contributions.