cactushugger, September 20, 2011 (view all comments by cactushugger)
So many of my professors referenced this work as the catalyst for the modern day environmental movement that I felt compelled to read it. I figured it would be outdated and clinical, but it seems as timely now as ever.
Carson's target in 1962 was DDT, but insert cosmetic pesticides still being used today and it is more relevant than ever. Her ability to break down technical information into terms anyone can understand, and her prescient understanding of ecosystems, makes it obvious why this writing was so influential. Definitely a must-read for anyone interested in the history of environmental policy and politics.
cdemos, December 4, 2008 (view all comments by cdemos)
I really enjoyed this book. I think it was powerful and revolutionary in the way it was able to affect our thinking and change the minds and outlooks of many. The first chapter, where Carson describes, in powerful narrative form, how the world exists in harmony before the fall and before the large use of poisons in the environment is powerful and stresses her point effectively. Rather than simply “tell” about the dangers of the present course, she “shows” and paints a picture for her readers to better understand. Also, many of the chapters include scientific descriptions of the properties of different chemicals. What I found very important in the book is that Carson does a solid job explaining the concepts presented in her book in a simple way. Rachel Carson wrote so that everyone can understand the book. You do not have to be a chemist or an agriculturist to understand and feel the strong and moving affects of this book.
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Silent Spring changed the way we thought about the environment and shaped today's environmental movement, calling us to action to protect our surroundings before we destroyed them. Today our impact on the environment is more harmful than ever, and Carson's message is just as important.
Silent Spring offers an in depth look of how chemicals developed after World War II were changing our environment. Carson's analysis of these new chemicals, including DDT, was ground-breaking. She incorporates the dangers of these chemicals including their effects on wildlife, water, and humans. Carson writes this fairly technical book in a way that anyone can understand the topic.
by Amy W.
by The New York Times,
"Her book is a cry to the reading public to help curb private and public programs which by use of poisons will end by destroying life on earth....Miss Carson, with the fervor of an Ezekiel, is trying to save nature and mankind."
by Houghton Mifflin,
Rarely does a single book alter the course of history, but Rachel Carson's Silent Spring did exactly that. The outcry that followed its publication in 1962 forced the government to ban DDT and spurred revolutionary changes in the laws affecting our air, land, and water. Carson's book was instrumental in launching the environmental movement. It is without question one of the landmark books of the twentieth century.
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