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Harmony: A New Way of Looking at Our World Hardcover – November 2, 2010

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Harper (November 2, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0061731315
  • ISBN-13: 978-0061731310
  • Product Dimensions: 1.5 x 7.8 x 9.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.8 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (43 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #439,460 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

For the first time, HRH The Prince of Wales shares his views on how our most pressing modern challenges—from climate change to poverty—are rooted in mankind's disharmony with nature, presenting a compelling case that the solution lies in our ability to regain a balance with the world around us

With its holistic approach, this provocative and well-reasoned book takes the discussion of sustainability and climate change in a new direction. Prince Charles shows how the solutions to problems like climate change lie not only in technology but in our ability to change the way we view the modern world.

For decades, the Prince of Wales has been studying a wide array of disciplines to understand every aspect of man's impact on the natural world, and in that time he has examined everything from architecture to organic farming to sustainable economics. Now, for the first time, he speaks out about his years of research, presenting a fascinating look at how modern industrialization has led us to a state of disharmony with nature, created climate change, and pushed us to the brink of disaster.

From the rice farms of India to the prairies of America's corn belt, from the temples of Ancient Egypt to the laboratories of industrial designers, Harmony spans the globe to identify the different ways that contemporary life has abandoned the hard-earned practices of our history, a shift that has spurred a host of social problems and accelerated climate change.

Drawing on cases from farming, healthcare, transportation, and design, the Prince of Wales also offers solutions for change, creating a new vision for our world, one that incorporates the traditional wisdom of our past with the modern science of our present to avert catastrophe. In the end, Harmony paints a holistic portrait of what we as a species have lost in the modern age, while outlining the steps we can take to regain the harmony of our ancestors.

Illustrated with lush, four-color photographs and charts, this intelligent, practical, and well-reasoned guide is an indispensable weapon in the battle to save our planet.

About the Author

The Prince of Wales has used his unique position to make a difference throughout the world, establishing numerous charities and public interests, and organizing The Prince's Rainforests Project to combat deforestation and global warming.

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Customer Reviews

I can almost forgive him for Camilla reading this book.
The book is extremely well written, full of wisdom, well thought out, and so eye opening.
C. Johnson
HRH Prince Charles has truly published a far reaching book with "Harmony".
Dean Krause

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

65 of 71 people found the following review helpful By Wendy Victor on November 12, 2010
Format: Hardcover
The author, often maligned and trivialized by the press, shows himself here to be a serious thinker, writer, historian and visionary. I believe he is the best product of the British monarchy to emerge in the past two hundred years.

His book clearly analyzes the root causes of our separation from a state of harmony, and predicts the consequences of this estrangement from the natural world. Widely read himself, he interjects his personal thoughts and opinions into the narrative, thereby creating an informal approach to what could have been a dry text.

I love this book. lt inspires me to do the right thing, to pay attention not only to our built environment but also to keep trying to connect my spirit to my actions.
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50 of 59 people found the following review helpful By J.C. on November 2, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Utterly engrossed from the first page to the last. Did not want to put it down.

Prince Charles is BRILLIANT about nature and the environment and yes, how people act in relationship to that. OH MY. Am so glad that he has written this and it will be available for so many people to discover and enjoy and benefit from.
Finally someone who thinks like me but says it far more eloquently:)

I wish everyone thought like him, we would have such a better world, not just physically, but in terms of understanding and perception and cooperation with Earth. He really sees the connections that are so important to not only surviving but thriving for our ecology and world, in many aspects, from animals to plants to architecture to spirituality.

I can almost forgive him for Camilla reading this book. And if she understood him -- and Diana didn't, for the first time I can see why he wanted to be with Canilla because of her personality, and how she made him feel so good.

His viewpoint is far advanced beyond accepted science and industry's ineffective ways.


He is really, really, really wise. I hope this book makes people think, and even more than that, encourages them to adopt some of the ideas he suggest with such good sense behind them.
If Prince William follows in his father's footsteps with this, it would be wonderful as well.
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22 of 25 people found the following review helpful By R. Steuteville on January 17, 2011
Format: Hardcover
This review was published on newurbannetwork.com

Urbanists have long admired Prince Charles as the developer of new urban Poundbury, a town extension of Dorchester, England. He has also earned respect for his bold and blunt critiques of modernist architecture -- including the notorious 1984 comparison of a proposed addition to the British Museum to "a monstrous carbuncle on the face of a much loved and elegant friend."

But Charles's architecture and land development exploits are but an offshoot of his worldview -- explained at length in his new book, Harmony: A New Way of Looking at Our World. The book, which deals extensively with the built environment as well as deeper, related concepts, is of interest to urbanists.

Harmony reveals the Prince of Wales as something of a sustainability renaissance man. It also underscores Charles's credibility -- not as a member of the royal family, that only accounts for fame; but because he has accomplished so much in realms well beyond what's expected of an heir to the throne. With no decrease in income or yields for farmers, Charles says, the world's agriculture could be converted to more organic, sustainable methods while absorbing 40 percent of carbon emissions. If it came from an environmentalist who has little personal experience with agriculture, such a claim might be dismissed by readers.

But Charles is an early, successful, adopter of organic farming methods. He saw to the transformation of his 1,000-acre Duchy Home Farm from conventional to organic methods in the 1980s, when such a move was considered flaky. "The decision was controversial, and I have to say that back then not many people could see the sense of my plan. But times have changed a bit," Charles writes.
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32 of 39 people found the following review helpful By Kathleen Grone on November 19, 2010
Format: Hardcover
I am extremely impressed with this book and have a whole new respect for Prince Charles. The man is brilliant and he cares. I think this is a must read for all and would love to see it in the classroom. I completely agree that most of our problems are because we do not live in Harmony with nature. Our world was created by a God who has all the answers, who has given us all the answers within nature, if we would only listen.
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24 of 31 people found the following review helpful By GregJS on November 16, 2010
Format: Hardcover
[This review has turned into something of an essay - but it was the only way I could express my opinion on a topic raised by the book that is very close to my heart and that I think is of great importance. If you just want to read the strictly "review" parts, they are contained in the first three and the last two paragraphs.]

The Prince of Wales (much to my surprise, I admit) persuasively demonstrates that the principles of harmony found in Nature can and should be incorporated into all aspects of modern life because doing so will not only make our lives environmentally sustainable, but will vastly increase our well-being in virtually every way possible. It is a beautiful vision, beautifully expressed and makes me wonder why this side of Prince Charles has been so ignored in the media (at least in the US). Clearly, he has been working hard to advance this timeliest of visions for several decades now, but I don't think many people over here are very aware of it. A true media cover-up!

The book begins by describing the principles of harmony as found in the natural world and how these principles were embedded very explicitly in the outlook, arts, and architecture of all traditional and classical civilizations (of both East and West), goes on to trace how these principles were abandoned as a result of the shift to a reductionistic-mechanistic outlook on life brought about by the Scientific Revolution and Enlightenment of the 17th and 18th centuries, and then provides numerous examples of how some people are beginning to reincorporate the principles of harmony back into various aspects of modern life, from agriculture to town planning to education to health care and so on, often with many rippling and self-multiplying positive results.
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