World Order Magazine’s “Topical Index” Now Available on the Wilmette Institute Website

The Wilmette Institute is happy to announce that World Order magazine’s “Topical Index of Articles, Editorials, and Reviews” is now available on the Wilmette website. The topical index, according to Dr. Betty J. Fisher, one of the magazine’s editors, “is not a traditional index organized by authors, titles, and subjects.” Rather it provides a variety of topics under which publications appear in reverse chronological order (from most recent to earliest) with volume, number, season, author (except for editorials), and titles for issues published from Fall 1966 (the magazine’s first issue) through Summer 2002 and with volume, number, author (except for editorials), and title for issues published from Volume 34, Number 1, through Volume 38, No. 3, the magazine’s final issue.

Users are able to search by typing in an author’s name (last name first) or a title or a topic. Topics in the Topical Index include: Abuse; the Arts; Business and Economic Development; the Central Figures of the Faith and the Greatest Holy Leaf; Current Events; Education; the Environment; the Equality of Women and Men; Health and Healing; History; Human Rights and Social Justice; Indexes (traditional indexes for Volumes 1-9—published separately and mailed with the Summer 1975 issue—and for Volumes 10, 11, 12, and 13, included in the Summer issues of the four volumes; Introductions to the Bahá’í  Faith; Marriage and Family Life; the New World Order (Economics, Justice and Law, Language, Peace, Polity, Science and Religion, and Miscellaneous); the Persecution of the Bahá’ís; Racial Unity; Religion and Spiritual Teachings; Shoghi Effendi; Spirituality; and Urban Planning and Architecture.

Browsing through the Topical Index is bound to turn up golden nuggets on a variety of topics. Some of the World Order editors’ favorite theme issues include:

The Arts: Authors/Poets/Artists:

  • The Robert Hayden issue published on the thirtieth anniversary of his appointment as Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress.
  • Robert Hayden: In Memoriam issue.
  • Mark Tobey: In Memoriam issue.
  • The Arts issue.
  • Cinema issue, Part 1.
  • Cinema issue, Part 2.

Central Figures of the Bahá’í Faith:

  • Commemorative Issue of the One Hundredth Anniversary of Bahá’u’lláh’s Passing and the Establishment of His Covenant.
  • ‘Abdu’l-Bahá: Fiftieth Anniversary of His Passing Commemorative issue.

Current Events:

  • America: 200 Years of Imperishable Hope issue.


  • United Nations International Education Year, 1970, issue.
  • Howard University’s 100th Anniversary issue.

The Environment:

  • Spiritual Spaces and Places issue.

The Equality of Women and Men:

  • Reeducating Ourselves about Gender issue.
  • United Nations International Women’s Year, 1975, issue.


  • Reflections on the Twentieth Century issue.
  • Further Reflections on the Twentieth Century: A Second Installment of Review Essays issue.

Human Rights and Social Justice:

  • Postnationalism issue.
  • The International Criminal Court issue.


  • Perspectives on The Promise of World Peace issue.

The Persecution of the Bahá’ís in Iran:

  • Waging War against Torture—A U.S. Senate Hearing issue.
  • The Persecution of Iran’s Bahá’ís.
  • The Persecution of Iran’s Bahá’ís—An Update issue.


  • Democratic Elections without Campaigns issue.

Racial Unity:

  • Brown v. Board of Education, 50 Years Later issue.
  • Alain Locke issue.

Religion/Spiritual Teachings:

  • Interfaith Dialogue: Exclusivism? Inclusivism? Pluralism? issue.
  • Making the Crooked Straight: A Contribution to Bahá’í Apologetics issue.

Shoghi Effendi:

  • Shoghi Effendi Commemorative issue.

World Order magazine’s mission, as stated on its masthead, was “to stimulate, inspire, and serve its readers in their search to understand the relationships between contemporary life and contemporary religious teachings and philosophy.” The Topical Index originated when the National Spiritual Assembly of the Bahá’ís of the United States asked for a snapshot of what the magazine published. The Index shows the range and variety of issues covered in the magazine as it endeavored to focus on topics of broad social concern from a Bahá’í perspective. It also shows that the magazine dealt with the basics of many topics and then revisited them over and over again with new insights and new understandings of their complexities.

Although the National Spiritual Assembly decided to stop publishing World Order, the Wilmette Institute hopes that by making the Topical Index available on its website that you will find the articles, editorials, and reviews useful for your personal and academic research and for personal and group study.

Unfortunately, the editors of World Order were not able to complete an index of the poetry included in the magazine. Under the rubric “The Arts” you will find entries for the several anthologies of poetry collected and put together by the distinguished poets Robert Hayden, William Stafford, and Herbert Woodward Martin.