"Silent Spring" - A Summary
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This paper reviews and analyzes Rachel Carson's classic work about the environment, "Silent Spring." The book addresses how Carson's book was able to have such a broad impact on the world's outlook on ecology and the use of pesticides. In particular, it notes how "Silent Spring" changed government policy toward pesticides. Additionally, the paper explores Carson's prose style and her use of facts in presenting her point. The review also gives a brief overview of Carson's theories of the impact of pesticides on the environment, citing the example of robins dying. The paper also links Carson's theories to environmental issues today. Finally, the paper examines how Carson's viewpoint, and those of other ecologists are stymied by politics. This includes a discussion on climate change and other environmentally relevant issues. The paper concludes by stating that there seems to be a seeming lack of commitment on the part of the American political powers to address any of these issues head on.
From the Paper:"In 1962 the first installment of Carson's book appeared in The New Yorker magazine, and things started happening at that time. Carson was called a "bird lover," a "cat lover," a "fish lover," "a priestess of nature" and also, Carson was referred to as a "devotee of a mystical cult having to do with laws of the universe which my critics consider themselves immune to" (Marco, p. 7).
"It's no wonder Carson caught the attention of the world (not just chemical companies but everyone who read newspapers and magazines); her opening paragraph - in her third chapter called "Elixirs of Death" - began: "For the first time in the history of the world, every human being is now subjected to contact with dangerous chemicals, from the moment of conception until death" (Carson, p. 15). She reflected the theme of the book, and the title of the book, from Chapter 8, "And No Birds Sing." The "sudden silencing of the song of birds, this obliteration of the color and beauty and interest they lend to our world have come about swiftly," she wrote (p. 103). She used the word "insidiously" and asserted that the disappearance - or reduction - of many bird species..."
Sample of Sources Used:
- Carson, Rachel. Silent Spring. Cambridge Massachusetts: The Riverside Press, 1962.
- Marco, Gina. Silent Spring Revisited. Washington, D.C.: American Chemical Society, 1987.
- Ord, David. "Since Silent Spring." ICIS Chemical Business Weekly. Retrieved Nov. 12, 2009, from Gale Database #A200088715. (2009).
- Peterson, Kristina. "Brown Pelican Removed From Endangered List." The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved November 11, 2009, from http://www.dowjones.com.
- U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. "Bald Eagle Fact Sheet: Natural History, Ecology, And History of Recovery." Retrieved Nov. 12, 2009, from http://www.fws.gov/midwest/eagle/recovery/biologue.html.
Cite this Book Review:
"Silent Spring" - A Summary (2012, June 26) Retrieved October 19, 2020, from https://www.academon.com/book-review/silent-spring-a-summary-151572/
""Silent Spring" - A Summary" 26 June 2012. Web. 19 October. 2020. <https://www.academon.com/book-review/silent-spring-a-summary-151572/>