Book review of silent spring

She was given an explanation. He will end by destroying the earth. The book was written by a scientist, marine biologist Carson, who had written the perhaps more poetic and less scientific but also popular The Sea Around Us, published seven years before, and its successor, The Edge of the Sea.

Book review of silent spring

Book review of silent spring

Fish and Wildlife Service employee photo In the mids, Carson became concerned about the use of synthetic pesticides, many of which had been developed through the military funding of science after World War II. The United States Department of Agriculture's fire ant eradication program, which involved aerial spraying of DDT and other pesticides mixed with fuel oil and included the spraying of private land, prompted Carson to devote her research, and her next book, to pesticides and environmental poisons.

She tried to enlist essayist E.

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White and a number of journalists and scientists to her cause. ByCarson had arranged a book deal, with plans to co-write with Newsweek science journalist Edwin Diamond. However, when The New Yorker commissioned a long and well-paid article on the topic from Carson, she began considering writing more than the introduction and conclusion as planned; soon it became a solo project.

Diamond would later write one of the harshest critiques of Silent Spring. From reading the scientific literature and interviewing scientists, Carson found two scientific camps; those who dismissed the possible danger of pesticide spraying barring conclusive proof and those who were open to the possibility of harm and were willing to consider alternative methods, such as biological pest control.

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Bythe USDA 's Agricultural Research Service responded to the criticism by Carson and others with a public service film, Fire Ants on Trial; Carson called it "flagrant propaganda" that ignored the dangers that spraying pesticides posed to humans and wildlife. That spring, Carson wrote a letter, published in The Washington Postthat attributed the recent decline in bird populations—in her words, the "silencing of birds"—to pesticide overuse.

Carson attended the ensuing FDA hearings on revising pesticide regulations; she was discouraged by the aggressive tactics of the chemical industry representatives, which included expert testimony that was firmly contradicted by the bulk of the scientific literature she had been studying.

She also wondered about the possible "financial inducements behind certain pesticide programs". Of particular significance was the work of National Cancer Institute researcher and founding director of the environmental cancer section Wilhelm Hueperwho classified many pesticides as carcinogens.

Carson and her research assistant Jeanne Davis, with the help of NIH librarian Dorothy Algire, found evidence to support the pesticide-cancer connection; to Carson the evidence for the toxicity of a wide array of synthetic pesticides was clear-cut, though such conclusions were very controversial beyond the small community of scientists studying pesticide carcinogenesis.

She had investigated hundreds of individual incidents of pesticide exposure and the resulting human sickness and ecological damage. In Januaryshe suffered an illness which kept her bedridden for weeks, delaying the book. As she was nearing full recovery in March, she discovered cysts in her left breast, requiring a mastectomy.

By December that year, Carson discovered that she had breast cancer, which had metastasized. However, further health troubles delayed the final revisions in and early By AugustCarson agreed to the suggestion of her literary agent Marie Rodell: Silent Spring would be a metaphorical title for the entire book—suggesting a bleak future for the whole natural world—rather than a literal chapter title about the absence of birdsong.

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The final writing was the first chapter, "A Fable for Tomorrow", which was intended to provide a gentle introduction to a serious topic. By mid, Brooks and Carson had largely finished the editing and were planning to promote the book by sending the manuscript to select individuals for final suggestions.

DDT is a prime example, but other synthetic pesticides—many of which are subject to bioaccumulation —are scrutinized. Carson accuses the chemical industry of intentionally spreading disinformation and public officials of accepting industry claims uncritically.

Most of the book is devoted to pesticides' effects on natural ecosystems, but four chapters detail cases of human pesticide poisoning, cancer, and other illnesses attributed to pesticides. In laboratory tests on animal subjects, DDT has produced suspicious liver tumors.

Scientists of the Food and Drug Administration who reported the discovery of these tumors were uncertain how to classify them, but felt there was some "justification for considering them low grade hepatic cell carcinomas.

The book closes with a call for a biotic approach to pest control as an alternative to chemical pesticides. She said in Silent Spring that even if DDT and other insecticides had no environmental side effects, their indiscriminate overuse was counterproductive because it would create insect resistance to pesticides, making them useless in eliminating the target insect populations:Silent Spring: Silent Spring, nonfiction book written by Rachel Carson that became one of the most-influential books in the modern environmental movement.

Published in , Silent Spring was widely read by the general public and became a New York Times best seller. The book provided the . Space exploration was still a daydream; continental drift and sea-floor spreading a preposterous heresy. So her book was one of the goads that spurred on the next generation of oceanographers and marine biologists.

In , already dying of cancer, she published Silent Spring. From the Taoist beliefs of Ursula Le Guin’s Earthsea books to the complexity of Steven Erikson’s Malazan Book of the Fallen.

From the ambition of Stephen Donaldson’s Thomas Covenant books to the beautifully written Realm of the Elderlings by Robin Hobb.

Book review of silent spring

Silent Spring is an environmental science book by Rachel Carson. The book was published on 27 September and it documented the adverse effects on the environment of the indiscriminate use of accused the chemical industry of spreading disinformation and public officials of accepting the industry's marketing claims unquestioningly..

In the late s, Carson turned her. Nov 09,  · When you purchase an independently reviewed book through our site, we earn an affiliate commission. Every fall, over the course of two or three weeks, New Yorkers get treated to a generous helping of dance at the hallowed City Moorish extravaganza on West 55th Street was the original home of the New York City Ballet, and it is still a great place to see dance.

Silent Spring by Rachel Carson – review | Tim Radford | Science | The Guardian