Winter Symposium: Transformation without Apocalypse
February 14-15. 2014
This symposium brought together a diverse, energetic, engaged community to celebrate and create tangible visions of new/old ways to prosper without exhausting the planet. Keynote speakers included Tim DeChristopher, the courageous environmental activist featured in the film “Bidder 70,” renowned authors Ursula K. LeGuin and Kim Stanley Robinson, and eco-philosopher Joanna Macy, among others.

Words on Fire: Toward a New Language of Wildland Fire
November 1-2, 2012
This symposium considered the range of language we currently use to grapple with wildland fire; looked toward new metaphors; and revitalized language that might help us forge ever more thoughtful, realistic, flexible, and creative relationships with wildland fire. Read the Press Release about keynote speaker Stephen J. Pyne, biographies of the speakers, and a schedule of the symposium. Learn more in these reports: Post-event Summary Report, Engaging the Humanities to Address Wildland Fire, and The Literature of Fire: An Analysis and Bibliography.

The Power of Nature: Mt. St. Helens, 1980 - 2010
May 18, 2010
Illahee, the Mount St. Helens Institute, the Spring Creek Project, and the U.S. Forest Service co-sponsored this evening with three profound environmental thinkers—Gary Snyder, Jerry Franklin, and Ursula K. Le Guin. The speakers reflected on the power and change inherent in our close neighbor, Mount St. Helens, thirty years to the day after its historic eruption in 1980. Visit the Illahee website for more information.

In the Blast Zone: Catastrophe and Renewal on Mount St. Helens (Book Launch)
May 16, 2009
Most popular accounts of the momentous 1980 eruption of Mount St. Helens have focused on the devastation it caused. More recent scientific work on the volcano tells a story of unexpectedly rapid and varied ecological and geological change. In the Blast Zone is the first book to present a cross-pollination of literary and scientific perspectives on the mountain’s history of cataclysm and renewal. Read a review or purchase a copy from OSU Press.


The Mount St. Helens Foray: Geographies of Destruction and Renewal.
July 21-24, 2005
Twenty creative writers, scientists, philosophers and others gathered together on Mount St. Helens for four days of camping, hiking, learning, and sharing insights about the meaning of cataclysms and the sources of renewal. The Foray asked the question: What can this radically altered landscape tell us about how to understand nature and how to live our lives? Read about the gathering in TerraSee photos from this event. Read writings from the foray on the online journal Order the book of essays inspired by the gathering “In the Blast Zone: Catastrophe and Renewal on Mt. St. Helens.”