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‘We need the literature of other countries to expand our
horizons and stimulate our ideas. Without it, we are not only
diminished, we are starved’
(The Times, Magnus Linklater 29/06/05)
A Prayer for World Peace
by Jane Goodall
Age Range: 9-11
This is a striking book from Minedition by Jane Goodall, the world-renowned naturalist, who is recognised the world over for her commitment to natural preservation, and for efforts to bring peace to all parts of the world.
A Prayer for World Peace contains prayers for victims of violence and war, poverty, homelessness and for those suffering injustice. Prayers on how to value each other or for more open-mindedness to new ideas, shunning dogma, but above all a prayer for peace in the world. Not surprisingly, given Goodall's background, there are important prayers for the environment and the creatures we share the planet with –
"that we may strive to heal the hurts
that we have inflicted on nature ”
There is a real emphasis on respect for life, all life, which is a very important lesson for children to learn.
Goodall's poetic text avoids sentimentality and provide a universal message of hope for everyone regardless of their faith. Iranian illustrator, Feeroozeh Golmohammadi’s artwork is luminous with its swirling colours and symbolism that convey a real spiritual beauty – whether the images depict a trail of refugees or a child cupping it hand around a small bird, doves that represent not just peace, but forgiveness, love and understanding or the chicken and bull which serve as emblems of the suffering of animals everywhere – they are intensely powerful.
A Prayer for World Peace is a candid depiction of the suffering and injustice in the world, but it also serves as a prevailing message of hope too, in a time when it has never been more needed.