Tag Archives: The Amazon

Nature & The Arts: Orion Magazine – Spring 2023


Orion Magazine (Spring 2023)THIS ISSUE features exclusively works in or about translation, engaging with over twenty-five languages across six continents.

Moving the Saints

Passages from a deconstructed homeland

The Northern Mariana Islands lie in a crescent moon south-southeast of Japan. At the lower point is Guåhan, also known as Guam, an island that is geologically part of the same volcanic chain but that set itself apart by becoming an unincorporated U.S. territory instead of remaining part of the Commonwealth.

Corporeal River

On a body filled by the Amazon
Origami art by Gonzalo García Calvo

BANZEIRO—THIS IS WHAT THE PEOPLE of the Xingu call places where the river grows savage. Where, if you’re lucky, you can make it through; where, if you’re not, you can’t. It is a place of danger between where you’re coming from and where you want to go.

10 Beautiful Books in or About Translation

Our Spring 2023 issue speaks to the language of nature and features works in or about translation. Here, Orion staffers and friends pulled together a list of their favorite fiction and nonfiction books that in some way reflect this literature of etymology.

—Sumanth Prabhaker



The Blue Fox - Sjón

Farrar, Straus and Giroux

This slim fantastical novel reads like an incantation. Set in rural late-19th century Iceland, its braided, lyrical, fugue-like narrative is tender and electric. Here we find a cruel priest named after a monster, trapped in an ice cave, raving at a dead fox. But too, a kindly herbalist burying his friend with her feather collection—a young woman with Down syndrome who spoke a language of her own—who he rescued from an unthinkable fate. This was my first encounter reading Sjón, who is apparently so big in his home country he doesn’t need a last name, but the book’s otherworldliness made perfect sense when I learned he writes lyrics for Björk. This one will haunt me for a while.

Why Fish Don’t Exist: A Story of Loss, Love, and the Hidden Order of Life


Why Fish Don't Exist: A Story of Loss, Love, and the Hidden Order of Life - Miller, Lulu

Simon and Schuster

In Lulu Miller’s Why Fish Don’t Exist, naming becomes an imposition, an attempt at order and, sometimes, hierarchy. In this book—part memoir, part biography—Miller is searching for a reason to keep living, a sense of order in a chaotic world, and she does so by looking to a taxonomist who spent his life naming the creatures under the sea: David Starr Jordan.

Research Preview: Science Magazine- January 27, 2023

Science Magazine (January 27, 2023) – The Amazon forest is changing rapidly as a result of human activities, including deforestation for agriculture, such as these soybean fields in Belterra, Pará, Brazil. Remaining areas of forest are experiencing an increased incidence of fires, drought, and the effects of neighboring land uses. These changes threaten local biodiversity and communities and alter the global climate.

Bird flu spread between mink is a ‘warning bell’

Big outbreak at a Spanish farm reignites fears of an H5N1 influenza pandemic

Can California’s floods help recharge depleted aquifers?

Plans to drown orchards and farm fields to boost groundwater supplies get off to a slow start

In Science Journals

Highlights from the Science family of journals

Views: ‘Primal Survivor – Escape The Amazon’ (2022)

Survivalist Hazen Audel embarks on a risky journey to escape the Amazon rainforest and travel 500 miles to the Atlantic coast. Of course his voyage won’t be easy and he encounters some of the jungle’s most fascinating and frightening wildlife. From an Anteater and Anaconda to a Tarantula and Tailless Whip Scorpion, this thrilling journey will be one to remember. Join Hazen on this remarkable adventure in Primal Survivor: Escape The Amazon, premieres Thursday 14th April at 9pm, on National Geographic UK.

Research: How Africa Keeps The Amazon Green

Jet streams sprinkle North African dust over the Amazon, providing the rain forest with much needed nutrients. Changing wind patterns and increasing smoke may shift the system.

Science: Future Of Energy, Amazon Rainforest, CRISPR

The war in Ukraine has sparked an energy crisis, as European countries attempt to cut ties with Russia. The team discusses what this means for the future of energy production and how it may speed up our pivot to renewable energy. They also explore the growing concerns at various nuclear sites in Ukraine, as some have been seized by the Russians, while others have been damaged during the conflict.

For the first time a virgin birth has taken place in a mammal – a female mouse has given birth without any input from a male. The team explains how CRISPR gene editing has been used to create embryos from unfertilised eggs.

As the Amazon rainforest becomes less resilient to drought, there are fears it may be passing a tipping point that could turn the whole system from forest into savannah. Earth system scientist Tim Lenton of the University of Exeter explains the devastating global impact this would have.

Taking a much-needed trip off the planet, the team discusses two stories from Mars, one from NASA’s Perseverance rover and another from China’s Zhurong rover. We also present an audio space-quiz you can take part in! Thanks to NASA/JPL-Caltech/LANL/CNES/CNRS/ISAE-Supaéro for the audio clips. 

And legendary cosmologist Martin Rees shares his thoughts on the existence of extraterrestrial intelligence in the universe and the fascinating concept of ‘secular’ intelligent design.

On the pod are Rowan Hooper, Penny Sarchet, Matt Sparkes, Adam Vaughan and Richard Webb. To read about these stories and much more, subscribe at newscientist.com/podcasts.

Rainforests: Indigenous People Struggle In Brazil

“They used to kill us with guns, now they kill us with deforestation and dams.” The Brazilian government’s failure to protect the Amazon forest is forcing the Munduruku indigenous people to take action against land grabs and illegal logging – and try to save the rain forest on their own.

In an unprecedented movement led by Chief Juarez Saw Munduruku, for the last six years indigenous people have been fighting the theft and destruction of their forest home. Since 1970, 20% of the Brazilian Amazon has been deforested. Logging and forest fires are threatening a further 20%. Scientists say that at 40% deforestation, we will reach the point of no return. The forest will be lost forever, replaced by savannahs – and the environmental consequences will be catastrophic.

The Amazon is often known as ‘the lungs of the planet,’ producing 6% of the world’s oxygen. It is no secret that the rainforest has been losing a dramatic fight against an array of threats, encouraged by capitalism, consumerism and greed – both legal and illegal.

In today‘s Brazil, some 600,000 square kilometers of land – an area about the size of France — are farmed by farmers who don’t officially own it. The military dictatorship (1964-1985) encouraged them to settle on state-owned land, but the farmers never became legal owners. As a result, speculators now seize the areas, clear the forests, then resell the plots with forged title deeds. This land grab, known as “grilagem” in Portuguese, has led to uncontrolled forest clearing and fierce conflicts.

The documentary was shot from 2014 to 2020, under three different Brazilian governments. It provides deep insights into the drama of the illegal occupation of state land and forest areas by organized crime groups. Several indigenous peoples have united under Juarez Saw Munduruku, leader of the Munduruku people, in a last-ditch bid to save the planet’s most important forest.

Wildlife: ‘Amazon Pigmy Geckos – The Unsinkable Lizard’ (BBC Earth Video)

This little pygmy gecko has an amazing superpower, that helps it survive in the wet season.

The Amazon pigmy gecko is a species of lizard in the Sphaerodactylidae family found in northern South America in Colombia, Venezuela, the Guianas, Brazil, Ecuador, and northern Peru.