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The Hidden Connections: A Science for Sustainable Living [Paperback]

Fritjof Capra
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Jan 2004
Fritjof Capra, bestselling author of The Tao of Physics and The Web of Life, here explores another frontier in the human significance of scientific ideas—applying complexity theory to large-scale social interaction.

In the 1980s, complexity theory emerged as a powerful alternative to classic, linear thought. A forerunner of that revolution, Fritjof Capra now continues to expand the scope of that theory by establishing a framework in which we can understand and solve some of the most important issues of our time. Capra posits that in order to sustain life, the principles underlying our social institutions must be consistent with the broader organization of nature. Discussing pertinent contemporary issues ranging from the controversial practices of the World Trade Organization (WTO) to the Human Genome Project, he concludes with an authoritative, often provocative plan for designing ecologically sustainable communities and technologies as alternatives to the current economic globalization.

Product details

  • Paperback: 300 pages
  • Publisher: Anchor Books; Reprint edition (Jan 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0385494726
  • ISBN-13: 978-0385494724
  • Product Dimensions: 20.4 x 13.4 x 1.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,117,074 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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'Doctor Capra is, indeed, a physicien de la terre' Jay Griffiths, Guardian --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From the Back Cover

Recent scientific discoveries indicate that all of life – from the most primitive cells, up to human societies, corporations and nation-states, even the global economy – is organized along the same basic patterns and principles: those of the network.

However, the new global economy differs in important aspects from the networks of life: whereas everything in a living network has a function, globalism ignores all that cannot give it an immediate profit, creating great armies of the excluded. The global financial network also relies on advanced information technologies – it is shaped by machines, and the resulting economic, social and cultural environment is not life-enhancing but life-degrading, in both a social and an ecological sense.

Capra demonstrates conclusively how tightly humans are connected with the fabric of life and makes it clear that it is imperative to organize the world according to a different set of values and beliefs, not only for the well-being of human organizations, but for the survival and sustainability of humanity as a whole.

--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
49 of 50 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hidden Connections: Revealed. 23 April 2003
From the outset I was utterly hooked, it was a completely compelling read. Fritjof Capra moves from and connects deep cellular biology and the origins of cellular life through philosophy, psychology, sociology, economics, globalisation, environmentalism, social theory and anthropology with both grace and beauty finishing with light, hope and the framework of a new way of thinking. Reading this book was a truelly enlightening experience, it is highly accessable to all, and must surely rate as essential for all readers in the 21st century. The Hidden Connection inspires and educates, provokes thought and challenges the way we interact with the world and others, it is a truley awe-inspiring read that has the potential to change the way in which we live and view our planet.
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27 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A world of unified systems 29 Sep 2004
Capra attempts to provide a conceptual framework that integrates the physical, cognitive and social dimensions in order to present a unified view of consciousness, society and life and also to develop a coherent and systemic approach to addressing the world's most pressing problems.
In the first part he constructs a new theoretical framework by looking at the nature of life, the nature of consciousness and the nature of social reality. He deals extensively with networking that has become an important social phenomenon and a critical source of power in the world.
The second part explores the management of human organisations, i.e. why and how these are living systems; economic globalisation; a systemic analysis of the ethical and scientific problems of biotechnology, with reference to the human genome project, and; the major problems facing the world today.
The author does a good job of pointing out the unified systems that integrate the biological, cognitive and social aspects of life and of explaining how a new vision of reality is unfolding, together with the social implications of this transformation.
Hidden Connections is a great read. The book contains explanatory notes, a bibliography and an index. Other interesting books dealing with this subject include Small World by Mark Buchanan and Universality by Mark Ward.
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19 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Heralds the new Worldview 10 Jun 2002
By A Customer
Knits together the key ideas and concepts of the researchers who are constructing the new Worldview. In contrast to the Postmodernists, Capra is putting forward a viable alternative, something we can exlore for ourselves. Cornerstones of his new Worldview are Systems theories such as autopoiesis, dissipative structures - but also neurophenomenology, hermeneutics and sustainability. This book should be read widely by those of us who feel that there are better ways to manage our planet.
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