Authors and Contributors

Peter Matthiessen - Essayist

Peter Matthiessen

Peter Matthiessen is the acclaimed author of numerous works of fiction and nonfiction. His subjects include vanishing cultures, oppressed people, and endangered wildlife and landscapes, and his work is essentially based on his wilderness travels. His nonfiction books include The Birds of Heaven: Travels with Cranes, Tigers in the Snow, The Tree Where Man Was Born, which was nominated for the National Book Award, and The Snow Leopard, which won it. While writing In the Spirit of Crazy Horse and Indian Country, Matthiessen turned his attention toward the history, culture, and political plight of American Indians. In 1990, he was made a laureate of the Global Honor Roll of the United Nations Environmental Program (UNEP). In 1991, Matthiessen was honored with the John Steinbeck Award, which recognizes contributions to literature and humanity. He has also received lifetime achievement awards from the Heinz Foundation, Lannan Foundation, and the Society of Conservation Biologists, and the Gold Medal in Natural History from the Philadelphia Academy of Sciences. Matthiessen is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters, as well as the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

Matthiessen contributed "In the Great Country" to Arctic National Wildlife Refuge: Seasons of Life and Land (Braided River, 2003).