Analysis of Silent Spring by Rachel Carson
Silent Spring is a novel written by a woman named Rachel Carson, which
was published in 1962. With advance sales of 40 000 copies the book
went on to be recognised in 1992 as the most influential book of the
last 50 years, and was held in much the same respect and admiration as
great works such as Karl Marx's 'Das Capital and Charles Darwin's 'The
Origin of Species'.
The book takes an in depth look at the hazardous and detrimental
consequences of the use of chemical fertilisers and pesticides in not
only agriculture, but in other activities particularly leisure. It
looks in detail at the effects on soil, rivers, wildlife and humans.
As well as providing information on research into such effects, a
brief philosophy on the solution to cancer and suggestions for less
toxic means of pest control, Carson also questions the role of
science. The author queries humanity's faith in scientific and
technological progress, and for the first time looked at the
responsibility of industrial society in the initiation of large scale
environmental suffering. Setting the stage for the environmental
protection movement. In addition, Carson disproves her former belief
that nature was too great and powerful a thing to ever be effected by
humans and their actions.
Rachel Carson was born on a farm in Pennsylvania in 1907. She
graduated from Pennsylvania College for Women in 1928 and went on to
study a Masters in Marine Biology at John Hopkin's University in
Baltimore. She continued her academic career teaching at the
University of Maryland before finding employment at the US Fish and
Wildlife Service. She spen.
. middle of paper.
. ersial book. It challenged people, business
and governments that others had been too scared to question.
The book was an important eye-opener. It is difficult to say how long
the negative effects of chemical fertilisers and pesticides would have
gone unnoticed and ignored had it not been for the research and
writing of Rachel Carson. It was also an ecological eye-opener for the
general public, in that many realised that fertilisers and pesticides
could affect them even if they didn't use them themselves.
The impact of Silent Spring was powerful because the writing itself
was powerful. The reaction of the government and the start of the
Environmental Movement signify this power.
What is interesting is that Rachel Carson's Silent Spring is still an
incredibly relevant book today, 40years after the research was carried
out and the book was published.
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Legacy of Rachel Carson Essay - Rachel Carson has forever changed the very dynamic of the United States. Her books brought environmental issue to the forefront of public concern. She advocated fiercely and passionately for a change in the government’s policy with the environment. Her work and tireless effort centered on the growing problem of insecticides and pesticides in the general public, namely DDT. The chemical itself was extremely prevalent in the domestic markets but also a popular insecticide used during WWII. In one of life’s great ironies, the creator of DDT, Paul Muller, received the Nobel Prize in Medicine 1948. [tags: Biographical, Pesticide Regulation, Silent Spring]
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Rachel Carson Essay - One of the prime ecologists in the world, best known for her book Silent Spring, was Rachel Carson. Rachel Carson’s book caused controversy and a scare for the progression of the environmental movement. “(Silent Spring) spells out in memorable detail through out the book the effects of synthetic insecticides and herbicides on water, soil, plants, wildlife, fish and human beings. But in the book’s final chapter she suggests alternative courses of action for mankind —- a way out of this march toward death.” (Holmes, Pg. [tags: Biography, Silent Spring]
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How does the Rachel Carson use language to convey changes and contrasts in mood and meaning in Silent Spring? The mood in the extracts from Rachel Carson's Silent Spring changes continually from beginning to end. The first paragraph has an almost fairy-tale feeling to it - the tone is pleasant and calm and the opening, "There was once a townÃ¢ÂÂ¦" is quite similar to that you'd find in a child's story book. The chapter title, "A Fable for Tomorrow" also reinforces this story-like sentiment. This is supported by the dreamy imagery Carson uses; she talks of mists and snow, and describes the spring blooms as "white clouds". Carson describes various natural elements of this town, rather than it's architecture or it's inhabitants, and does so using long, flowing sentences echoing the soft, undulating landscapes she is talking about. Even the words she uses are generally soft-sounding, which reflect this harmonious tone.
However, in the second paragraph, the tone changes quite dramatically. The first thing I noticed was that the sentences are much shorter and the words are much blunter and have a sharper sound, e.g. sickness, stricken - creating quite an angry temperament. When looking more closely at the words Carson used, I recognise that more than once she used words to depict puzzlement and uncertainty. For example, she described the disease affecting the livestock as mysterious, and wrote that deaths were "sudden and unexplainedÃ¢ÂÂ¦", leaving the townspeople "puzzled and disturbed." These descriptions, coupled with the original term, "Some evil spellÃ¢ÂÂ¦" change the tone from gentle, to bitter and unpleasant whilst reflecting the story-like qualities from the first paragraph. The unexplainable aspect described also creates a sense of vulnerability, but impacts more on the people living in the town, who weren't discussed in the first paragraph. Carson does also explain, quite fully, the way in which the birds had been affected, contrasting the once energetic sound of the dawn chorus with the silence and stillness that replaced it.
In the third paragraph we see Carson come out of the story-telling format so far used, and take over with her own personal narrative. The attitude is slightly calmer than that of the second paragraph, but also quite melancholy, endorsing the helpless feeling touched upon in paragraph two. The message she portrays is powerful, and thought provoking, and shows how the book might have been valuable in the environmental movement in the 1960's.
In conclusion, I think the changes Carson used were subtle, but very effective - the most valuable tool was changing the sentence structure. By switching from long, fluent sentences, full of imagery in the first paragraph, to much sharper and more compact sentences in the second. the reader can pick up on the changes in attitude almost without realising it.
BibliographyChambers, A and Northedge, A. (1997) The Arts Good Study Guide (Chapters 4 and 5), The Open UniversityExtracts from Chapter 1 A Fable for Tomorrow, of Silent Spring, Carson, R. 1962
Themes of Rachel Carson 's Silent Spring
Prior to the introduction of major legislation concerning the environment. it had been a popularly accepted notion that our utilization of the earth would be subject to no limitations. Our manifold purposes. pertaining to the expansion of commercial industries the procurement of lands for residency. the optimization of geological settings for pedestrian needs and the constantly swelling demand for space upon which to drive had for many years after the start of the Industrial Age taken precedence in our notion of sociological advancement. The
overarching notion that the earth belonged to man to do with as he d was given little contest in the public forum. with large economic. political and cultural contingents generally conceding to the argument that this was the best avenue to serving the public interests
Decades of industrialization. however. leading into the economic boom which followed World War II and saw America into its first great age of consumerism. began to take a legitimate toll on the natural landscape of the nation. Especially in the United States. which was so valued a land asset in its founding due to the seemingly endless wealth of natural resources and species diversity. it had been perceived that such bounties were at our disposal in perpetuity. In 1962. marine biologist and environmental activist Rachel Carson published Silent Spring. a work that opened the first round of fire against that perception. A book rife with frightening contentions about the irreparable damage with which we have already lashed the earth. Silent Spring is a sensible point of entry into the discourse over environmental preservation. As one of the first popular works of non-fiction to promote the idea that ecological decline will inevitably lead to a decline in the survivability of man. Carson 's book touched off a public awareness of the need to apply new strategies to extending environmental conscientiousness
Carson 's book centers on the ill effects which the commonly accepted use of pesticides in agriculture were having on the health of environments which hosted all manner of life. among them humanity Decrying the absence of regulation against the use of such dangerous chemicals. Carson 's work points to some of the major environmental contingencies of our failure to prevent this poisoning of our ecology
She depicts a town where mysterious maladies swept the flocks of chickens the cattle and sheep sickened and died. Everywhere was a shadow of death. The farmers spoke of much illness among their families. In the town the doctors had become more and more puzzled by new kinds of sickness appearing among their patients (Carson. 2 That the correlation between these collected symptoms and the use of pesticides in our predominantly agricultural towns had yet to be recognized is important to consider. Though today it still receives troublingly little acknowledgment. the exponential rise in the consumption of organic produce in recent years is indicative of a graduating cognizance of that which Carson 's work brought to the forefront of.
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A whole spring without any birdsongs? No thanks. This sad, sad world is what Rachel Carson considers in Silent Spring .
Her main point is that all living things exist together. So what humans do to pollute the environment makes life miserable for a lot of other creatures. But she only thinks about these issues in real-life, ecological terms.
What can we learn from the physical environments of our favorite novels, and how the main characters interact with those environments? What about the natural phenomena that occur as authors are working on their texts—how might something as seemingly mundane as the weather affect the way various authors have written their most famous prose?
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As you say in your message on fronter, this does not have to be a summary but can be anything that comes in to my mind by reading this book. And so it is.
I remember that I discussed the main subject of this book with my brother during summer vacation. A good friend, who had listened to this discussion, recommended me Silent Spring by Rachel Carson. This book shows how aggressive chemical pesticides which was used during the 1960s in the agricultural context. More precisely Silent Spring reports major damage to the natural ecosystem caused by pesticides. The book mentions one of the most dangerous pesticides, DDT, short for Dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane. but now I�m almost heading into another subject.
Al though this book wasn�t recently published, the content is quite up to date. I was surprised how many details Rachel Carson managed to build in to her book. It may have been one of the reasons why the use of DDT is prohibited since 1972.
However, DDT was still being used even when researchers where able to show traces of this pesticide in the human body. Later in the 60s researchers proved that DDT was causing miscarriage and malformations. It was also proved that DDT promotes the formation of cancer.
Reliable sources say that the Author, Rachel Carson, already was concerned about the use of pesticides in the 1940s. She says in her book that uncontrolled and unexamined use of pesticides such as DDT would not just be of great harm to natural environment but also to humans.
After the publishing of Silent Spring. the US President J.F. Kennedy send his science advisory committee to investigate the claim. The result of this investigation was a strong regulation of pesticides.
I�m not done with the book yet, but I am looking forward to read more. I can strongly recommend this book. Especially to people who are interested in biology, science and environmental politics.
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin
Original Language: English
Date: September, 27 1962
Country: United States of America