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Encyclopedia > Silent Spring
Title Silent Spring

The Book-of-the-Month Club edition, with included endorsement by William O. Douglas
Author Rachel Carson
Country United States
Language English
Subject(s) Environmentalism
Publisher Houghton Mifflin
Released September 1962
Media type Hardcover/paperback

Silent Spring is a book written by Rachel Carson and published by Houghton Mifflin in September 1961. The book is widely credited with launching the environmentalism movement in the West. Image File history File linksMetadata No higher resolution available. ... The Book of the Month Club (founded 1923) is a mail-order business where consumers are offered a new book each month. ... William Orville Douglas (October 16, 1898 – January 19, 1980) was a United States Supreme Court Associate Justice. ... Rachel Louise Carson (27 May 1907 – 14 April 1964) was a Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania-born zoologist and marine biologist whose landmark book, Silent Spring, is often credited with having launched the global environmental movement. ... The English language is a West Germanic language that originates in England. ... For the psychology topic, see Environmental psychology. ... Houghton Mifflin Company is a leading educational publisher in the United States. ... Look up September in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... 1962 (MCMLXII) was a common year starting on Monday (the link is to a full 1962 calendar). ... Rachel Louise Carson (27 May 1907 – 14 April 1964) was a Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania-born zoologist and marine biologist whose landmark book, Silent Spring, is often credited with having launched the global environmental movement. ... Houghton Mifflin Company is a leading educational publisher in the United States. ... Look up September in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... 1961 (MCMLXI) was a common year starting on Sunday (the link is to a full 1961 calendar). ... For the psychology topic, see Environmental psychology. ...


When Silent Spring was published, Rachel Carson was already a well-known writer on natural history, but had not previously been a social critic. The book was widely read (especially after its selection by the Book-of-the-Month Club and an endorsement by Supreme Court Justice William O. Douglas), spending several weeks on the New York Times best-seller list, and inspired widespread public concerns with pesticides and pollution of the environment. Silent Spring facilitated the ban of the pesticide DDT[1] in 1972 in the United States. The Book of the Month Club (founded 1923) is a mail-order business where consumers are offered a new book each month. ... William Orville Douglas (October 16, 1898 – January 19, 1980) was a United States Supreme Court Associate Justice. ... The New York Times is an internationally known daily newspaper published in New York City and distributed in the United States and many other nations worldwide. ... the plane is spreading pesticide. ... Pollution is the release of environmental contaminants. ... DDT or Dichloro-Diphenyl-Trichloroethane is the first modern pesticide and is arguably the best known organic pesticide. ...


The book claimed detrimental effects of pesticides on the environment, particularly on birds. Carson accused the chemical industry of spreading disinformation, and public officials of accepting industry claims uncritically. She proposed a biotic approach to pest control as an alternative to DDT, claiming that DDT had been found to cause thinner egg shells and result in reproductive problems and death. A cropduster spreading pesticide. ... “Aves” redirects here. ... Chemical tanks in Lillebonne, France Chemical industry includes those industries involved in the production of petrochemicals, agrochemicals, pharmaceuticals, polymers, paints, oleochemicals etc. ... Disinformation, in the context of espionage, military intelligence, and propaganda, is the spreading of deliberately false information to mislead an enemy as to ones position or course of action. ... Look up biotic in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ...


Silent Spring has made many lists of the best nonfiction books of the twentieth century. In the Modern Library List of Best 20th-Century Nonfiction it was at #5, and it was at #78 in the conservative National Review's list of the 100 best non-fiction books of the century. However, it was a "honorable mention" on conservative Human Events' "Ten Most Harmful Books of the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries". Most recently, Silent Spring was named one of the 25 Greatest Science Books of All-Time by the editors of Discover Magazine [1]. The Modern Library List of 100 Best Nonfiction Books published in the 20th Century was published in 1998, chosen by the Modern Library Editorial Board. ... National Review (NR) is a biweekly magazine of political opinion, founded by author William F. Buckley Jr. ... Human Events is a weekly conservative magazine founded in 1944. ... Discover Magazine is a science magazine that publishes articles about science. ...

Contents

Thesis

The book stated that uncontrolled pesticide use led to the deaths of not only animals, especially birds, but also humans. Its title was meant to evoke a spring season in which no bird songs could be heard, because they had all died from pesticides. Its title was inspired by a poem by John Keats, "La Belle Dame sans Merci", which contained the lines "The sedge is wither'd from the lake,/And no birds sing." [2] “Aves” redirects here. ... John Keats John Keats (October 31, 1795 – February 23, 1821) was one of the principal poets of the English Romantic movement. ... Categories: Stub | Poems | British poems ...


Support

History professor Gary Kroll commented, "Rachel Carson's Silent Spring played a large role in articulating ecology as a 'subversive subject'— as a perspective that cut against the grain of materialism, scientism, and the technologically engineered control of nature."[2] Materialism refers to how a person or group chooses to spend their resources, particularly money and time. ... Scientism is a term mainly used as a pejorative[1][2][3] to accuse someone of holding that science has primacy over all other interpretations of life such as religious, mythical, spiritual, or humanistic explanations. ...


According to Time magazine in 1999, within a year or so of its publication, "all but the most self-serving of Carson's attackers were backing rapidly toward safer ground. In their ugly campaign to reduce a brave scientist's protest to a matter of public relations, the chemical interests had only increased public awareness." Time (whose trademark is capitalized TIME) is a weekly American newsmagazine, similar to Newsweek and U.S. News & World Report. ...


Carson had made it clear she was not advocating the banning or complete withdrawal of helpful pesticides, but was instead encouraging responsible and carefully managed use, with an awareness of the chemicals' impact on the entire ecosystem. However, some critics asserted that she was calling for the elimination of all pesticides.


Criticism

Even before Silent Spring was published by Houghton Mifflin in 1962, there was strong opposition to it. According to Time in 1999:

Carson was violently assailed by threats of lawsuits and derision, including suggestions that this meticulous scientist was a "hysterical woman" unqualified to write such a book. A huge counterattack was organized and led by Monsanto, Velsicol, American Cyanamid—indeed, the whole chemical industry—duly supported by the Agriculture Department as well as the more cautious in the media. The Monsanto Company (NYSE: MON) is a multinational agricultural biotechnology corporation. ... American Cyanamid was a large, diversified, American chemical manufacturer. ...

One of the book's most controversial claims was that DDT is a carcinogen; see DDT: Effects on human health for a summary of the evidence for and against her claim. The term carcinogen refers to any substance, radionuclide or radiation which is an agent directly involved in the promotion of cancer or in the facilitation of its propagation. ... DDT or Dichloro-Diphenyl-Trichloroethane is the first modern pesticide and is arguably the best known organic pesticide. ...


In the 1960's, biochemist and former chemical industry spokesman Robert White-Stevens stated, "If man were to follow the teachings of Miss Carson, we would return to the Dark Ages, and the insects and diseases and vermin would once again inherit the earth."[3] Petrarch, who conceived the idea of a European Dark Age. From Cycle of Famous Men and Women, Andrea di Bartolo di Bargillac, c. ... Orders See taxonomy Insects (Class Insecta) are a major group of arthropods and the most diverse group of animals on the Earth, with over a million described species—more than all other animal groups combined. ... The term disease refers to an abnormal condition of an organism that impairs function. ... The bane of Australian farmers - the wild rabbit Mouse Vermin is a pejorative word given to animals which are considered by users of the word to be pests or nuisances, most associated with the carrying of disease. ...


Industry and agribusiness advocates continue to criticize Silent Spring. In a 2005 essay, "The Harm That Pressure Groups Can Do", British politician Dick Taverne was damning in his criticism of Carson: Dick Taverne, Baron Taverne was born in 1928. ...

Carson didn't seem to take into account the vital role (DDT) played in controlling the transmission of malaria by killing the mosquitoes that carry the parasite (...) It is the single most effective agent ever developed for saving human life (...) Rachel Carson is a warning to us all of the dangers of neglecting the evidence-based approach and the need to weight potential risk against benefit: it can be argued that the anti-DDT campaign she inspired was responsible for almost as many deaths as some of the worst dictators of the last century. [4] Malaria is a vector-borne infectious disease that is widespread in tropical and subtropical regions, including parts of the Americas, Asia, and Africa. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ...


In 2002, Reason Magazine (part of the Reason Foundation) published an essay by Ronald Bailey, a fellow with the Competitive Enterprise Institute[5], marking the book's 40th anniversary. Both the Reason Foundation and the CEI have received substantial funding from corporations in regulated industries[6][7]. In the essay, Bailey wrote that the book had a mixed legacy; The libertarian Reason Magazine dedicated an issue to Ayn Rands influence one hundred years after her birth. ... The Reason Foundation is a nonprofit think tank founded in 1986 that also publishes Reason magazine. ... Ronald Bailey is the Science Editor for Reason magazine. ... The Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI) is a non-profit public policy organization founded in 1984 by Fred Smith. ...

The book did point to problems that had not been adequately addressed, such as the effects of DDT on some wildlife. And given the state of the science at the time she wrote, one might even make the case that Carson's concerns about the effects of synthetic chemicals on human health were not completely unwarranted. Along with other researchers, she was simply ignorant of the facts. But after four decades in which tens of billions of dollars have been wasted chasing imaginary risks without measurably improving American health, her intellectual descendants don't have the same excuse.[8]

See also

If the input of a toxic substance to an organism is greater than the rate at which the substance is lost, the organism is said to be bioaccumulating that substance. ...

References

  1. ^ EPA reference retrieved April 26, 2006
  2. ^ Gary Kroll, "Rachel Carson's Silent Spring:A Brief History of Ecology as a Subversive Subject", retrieved April 26, 2006
  3. ^ PBS Frontline program, Fooling with Nature, retrieved April 26, 2006
  4. ^ Taverne, Dick "The Harm That Pressure Groups Can Do", collected in Panic Nation, 2005, edited by Stanley Feldman and Vincent Marks, ISBN 1-84454-122-3.
  5. ^ "Ron Bailey bio"
  6. ^ Reason Foundation Funding at SourceWatch
  7. ^ Competitive Enterprise Institute Funding at SourceWatch
  8. ^ "Silent Spring at 40", Ronald Bailey, Reason, June 12, 2002

April 26 is the 116th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (117th in leap years). ... For the Manfred Mann album, see 2006 (album). ... April 26 is the 116th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (117th in leap years). ... For the Manfred Mann album, see 2006 (album). ... April 26 is the 116th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (117th in leap years). ... For the Manfred Mann album, see 2006 (album). ... Dick Taverne, Baron Taverne was born in 1928. ... Ronald Bailey is the Science Editor for Reason magazine. ... The libertarian Reason Magazine dedicated an issue to Ayn Rands influence one hundred years after her birth. ...

Sources

  • Carson, Rachel. Silent Spring (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1962), Mariner Books, 2002, ISBN 0-618-24906-0
  • Graham, Frank. Since Silent Spring (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1970), Fawcett 1976 reprint: ISBN 0-449-23141-0
  • Silent Spring Revisited, American Chemical Society, 1986: ISBN 0-317-59798-1, 1987: ISBN 0-8412-0981-2
  • Litmans, Brian and Jeff Miller, Silent Spring Revisited: Pesticide Use And Endangered Species, Diane Publishing Co., 2004, ISBN 0-7567-4439-3 (67 p.)
  • Lear, Linda. Rachel Carson: Witness for Nature. New York: Henry Holt and Company, 1997, Owl Books paperback 1998: ISBN 0-8050-3428-5
  • Murphy, Priscilla Coit, What A Book Can Do: The Publication and Reception of Silent Spring, University of Massachusetts Press, 2005, ISBN 1-55849-476-6
  • United States Environmental Protection Agency "What is DDT?" retrieved April 26, 2006
  • 'DDT Chemical Backgrounder', National Safety Council Retrieved May 30, 2005
  • Report on Carcinogens, Fifth Edition; U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, National Toxicology Program (1999).

June 16 is the 167th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (168th in leap years), with 198 days remaining. ... June 23 is the 174th day of the year (175th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar, with 191 days remaining. ... June 30 is the 181st day of the year (182nd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar, with 184 days remaining. ... 1962 (MCMLXII) was a common year starting on Monday (the link is to a full 1962 calendar). ... The New Yorker is an American magazine that publishes reportage, criticism, essays, cartoons, poetry and fiction. ... The American Chemical Society (ACS) is a learned society (professional association) based in the United States that supports scientific inquiry in the field of chemistry. ... April 26 is the 116th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (117th in leap years). ... For the Manfred Mann album, see 2006 (album). ... May 30 is the 150th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (151st in leap years). ... 2005 (MMV) was a common year starting on Saturday of the Gregorian calendar. ...

External links


  Results from FactBites:
 
metaphorik.de 04/2003 - Nerlich, Tracking the fate of the metaphor silent spring (7939 words)
Silent Spring has thus permeated public consciousness and the image of a silent spring has been used repeatedly as a rhetorical resource and a mine for metaphors and images in debates about the impact of science on society and on the environment.
silent spring evoked death, emptiness and the general despair felt by many involved in the slaughter or affected by the slaughter, a despair vividly expressed in many poems written by adults and children during the FMD crisis, poems which are permeated by the topic of ‘silence’.
silent spring seem to have a semantic dynamics that is based on the one hand on their intrinsic or textual semantic potential and on the other on their extrinsic or contextual use in various social, political, cultural and economic circumstances over time.
Silent Spring - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (1138 words)
Silent Spring was written by Rachel Carson and published in September, 1962.
However, some critics asserted that she was calling for the elimination of all pesticides, despite the fact that Silent Spring was positively reviewed by many outside of the academic field such as agricultural science and chemical science, and it became a runaway best seller both in the USA and overseas.
Even before Silent Spring was published by Houghton Mifflin in 1962, there was strong opposition to it.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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