Legacy. Heritage of a life

Original title: Legacy. L’héritage d’une vie

Publication Date:

November 2021



Original language and publisher

Territories Handled

Worldwide excl. French


Environment, Essay, Society

Legacy. Heritage of a life

Original title: Legacy. L’héritage d’une vie


Yann Arthus-Bertrand, an environmentalist who leaves no one indifferent. — Radio France Inter

An intimate and engaging autobiography in which [Bertrand] recounts the fortunes and encounters that have marked his life. — RFI

In Legacy, the president of the GoodPlanet Foundation makes a real distress call from the heart. — Chérie FM

For the first time ever, Yann Arthus-Bertrand, the environmentalist-humanist photographer and founder of the GoodPlanet Foundation, reveals a more personal side of himself in a book written in the first person. He explores the legacy that his generation will be leaving to today’s youth – the Greta Thunberg generation, takes stock of the state of the planet, and looks back over a life rich in experiences, pitfalls, and occasions for starting over.

It all started in Kenya. Discovering the country and its population were a revelation to him. The young wildlife photographer who had been working in a nature reserve near the French Alps headed off to Africa with his wife to devote three years to studying the behavior of a lion family. It would be a transformative experience, instilling him with a sense of purpose: the beauty and fragility of world must be protected right away. The idea – or rather the necessity – of supporting a humanist form of ecology dawned on him gradually. Along with the publishers Editions de La Martinière, he invented a kind of photography book that had never existed before; Earth from Above became an international best-seller. Then the state of the planet convinced Arthus-Bertrand to re-evaluate his own way of life and to take things even further. In 2005, he founded GoodPlanet, an NGO that strives for a more sustainable and equitable world.

He has had his share of controversy and doubts, of course; and there have been times that he was ready to give up. But his visceral belief in a fairer, cleaner and more beautiful world have won out every time. Now more than ever, they are urging him to pass the baton on to the next generation.
The inspiring first-person account of an ardent defender of a noble cause who relates his personal experiences for the first time.

Marketing Information

  • Over 10,000 copies sold
  • Yann Arthus-Bertrand’s film Legacy was shown on M6 in June 2021