Contact: Caitlin Graf, The Nation, press [at] thenation.com, 212-209-5400
New York, NY—February 7, 2020—The Nation is honored to announce that we’ve been nominated for a 2020 National Magazine Award for Arundhati Roy’s extraordinary work, “India: Intimations of an Ending,” in the category of ‘Essays and Criticism.’ The essay was adapted from Roy’s 2019 Jonathan Schell Memorial Lecture on the Fate of the Earth, created by Type Media Center.
The nomination is the first under the magazine’s new editor, D.D. Guttenplan, who succeeded editor and publisher Katrina vanden Heuvel in June. (Vanden Heuvel remains publisher and transitioned to the newly conceived role of editorial director.)
Long recognized as one of the publishing industry’s highest honors, the National Magazine Awards—colloquially known as the Ellies for the elephant-shaped trophy awarded to winners—recognize “print and digital publications that consistently demonstrate superior execution of editorial objectives, innovative techniques, noteworthy enterprise and imaginative design.” They are sponsored by the American Society of Magazine Editors. The Nation has won five National Magazine Awards and been a finalist 21 times since the prestigious competition began.
For decades, Arundhati Roy, one of India’s most trenchant social critics, has warned readers of The Nation of the dual threats of fascism’s firm footprint in the country and the perils of globalization. In her NMA-nominated essay, she warns of a class and caste war threatening the entire continent. “India: Intimations of an Ending” is a soaring and masterful 9,000-word essay explaining how Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the Hindu far right came to power, and how the ethno-nationalist party is no longer operating as a shadow state: It has become the state. Weaving themes of human rights and nationalism, self-determination and democracy, Roy details the chaos and distress caused by the Indian government’s August 2019 annexation of Kashmir—and what this means for the future.
The essay is adapted from Roy’s keynote at the 2019 Jonathan Schell Memorial Lecture on the Fate of the Earth, a series that was established in 2016 to honor the memory of Type Media Center fellow—and former Nation peace and disarmament correspondent—Jonathan Schell. The lecture series takes its name from his 1982 seminal work on the consequences of nuclear war. Delivered each year by a speaker selected by committee, the lecture is an original work that addresses topics written on by Schell, including environmentalism, nuclear disarmament, and peace, but which may include any important issue on which the future of humanity and other life on Earth might depend.
The full list of this year’s National Magazine Award finalists can be found here. Winners will be announced on March 12.
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