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Silent Spring by Rachel Carson

Silent Spring

by Rachel Carson

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
4,882781,536 (4.01)187
First published in 1962, Silent Spring can singlehandedly be credited with sounding the alarm and raising awareness of humankind's collective impact on its own future through chemical pollution. No other book has so strongly influenced the environmental conscience of Americans and the world at large.… (more)
Recently added byprivate library, Canutus, JulieWatts, DanielSlick, allebasi15, jmazzello, ASlibraries, domben2796, chasdoty, mjhanson
Legacy LibrariesCarl Sandburg
  1. 20
    Deep Green Resistance: Strategy to Save the Planet by Derrick Jensen (SonoranDreamer)
    SonoranDreamer: Deep Green Resistance is a book about a strategy for those who are frustrated with the ongoing poisoning of our planet even after all this time after Silent Spring was published.
  2. 20
    Our poisoned planet: can we save it? by Joseph Newman (Hedgepeth)
  3. 10
    The Everglades: River of Grass by Marjory Stoneman Douglas (TheLittlePhrase)
  4. 10
    The War on Bugs by Will Allen (lemontwist)
  5. 01
    Sanctuary: The Story of Naturalist Mary Majka by Deborah Carr (ShelfMonkey)
  6. 01
    The Right to Be Cold: One Woman's Story of Protecting Her Culture, the Arctic and the Whole Planet by Sheila Watt-Cloutier (thebookpile)
    thebookpile: In Silent Spring, Rachel Carson says that to get away from contamination from DDT and other harmful chemicals one would have to move to the far north, which at that time wasn't exposed to them. Ironically, 60 years later, the situation is almost reversed, as described by Sheila Watt-Cloutier in The Right to Be Cold.… (more)
  7. 14
    Breasts: A Natural and Unnatural History by Florence Williams (changsbooks)
  8. 14
    Risk: The Science and Politics of Fear by Dan Gardner (Noisy)
    Noisy: Risk (Chapter 10) gives the counterpoint to Silent Spring, showing up the ignorance of probability and statistics embodied in the demonising of cancer. Rising relative rates of cancer - a disease of an aging population - also indicate a falling rate of diseases such as tuberculosis and enteritis.… (more)

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» See also 187 mentions

English (74)  Catalan (2)  German (1)  Danish (1)  All languages (78)
Showing 1-5 of 74 (next | show all)
Scariest book I've ever read! (sorry Stephen King!) ( )
  Stahl-Ricco | May 17, 2020 |
Great!! This is a classic of the environmental movement, and I’d recommend it to anybody interested in the topic. Carson is a bit repetitive at times, and her wording can be confusing, but for the most part she does a great job at describing the situation and reasons to pressure change in the way we interact with our environment. This book is written about the chemicals we put into the world, but the mindset it pushes can be extended far beyond that. ( )
  meaqhan | May 1, 2020 |
I first read this in the l960s and remember well the furor around it. It helped me early on to see the dark stain in humanity. Yes, it was widely applauded, then we went back to business as usual painting ourselves in a corner. ( )
  LGCullens | May 1, 2020 |
This book changed history. It convinced politicians and other government figures that we have to preserve nature while it’s still here.The book’s message is still as relevant today as it was in the twentieth century when it was written. Rachel Carson is a brilliant practical woman who wants to improve our world and take care of the wild life we were destroying with chemicals and deforestation. It is a very inspiring book and if you didn’t already think with an ecological mindset, you will after you read it.

This book also brushes over the topic of the aged lifestyle. Carson believes that we live in an over-mechanized time and that we should give the machines a break. I some-what agree with that statement. I think that we should make more eco-friendly machines and factories (although it's very expensive.) But in reality, what will be better in the long-term? The eco-friendly machines and factories are. I don’t think we should give up our advanced lifestyles, but we should be more conscientious about nature than we are. ( )
  sdewG3 | Mar 25, 2020 |
I learned a lot from this book, and although parts of it are dated, others are still very relevant for today.

One of the things I did not know was that the pesticides Rachel Carson was talking about actually killed birds outright. Up till now I had thought that the title referred to the eggshell thinning caused by DDT, which would cause a gradual decline in bird populations. But at the time this effect was not known; what was known was that pigeons would die in midflight and fall from the skies and songbirds would die in convulsions after the application of the pesticides, and so the "silent spring" would come much sooner.

Contrary to popular belief, Silent Spring did not call for a ban on either DDT or any other pesticide. Instead it called for the more thoughtful and more responsible use of pesticides. But the message the public received appears to have been almost the reverse: DDT et al have all been banned in the US, while other broad-spectrum insecticides and herbicides continue to be applied with much less thought (glyphosate, I’m looking at you).

This book was not just scaremongering; according to a 1999 report prepared by the National Pesticide Information Center DDT is a dangerous neurotoxin.

So I do think this book is still relevant today. And I would say that what is most disturbing now is that the ignorance of the harm pesticides were causing has been replaced with indifference. ( )
  Jennifer708 | Mar 21, 2020 |
Showing 1-5 of 74 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (32 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Carson, Rachelprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Darling, LoisIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Darling, LouisIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Gore, AlIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hitchen, JonathanIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Huxley, JulianPrefacesecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Lazar, WilliamNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Lear, LindaIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Matthiessen, PeterIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Shackleton, EdwardIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wilson, Edward O.Afterwordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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The sedge is wither'd from the lake,
and no bird sings. Keats.
I am pessimistic about the human race because it is too ingenious for its own good. Our approach to nature is to beat it into submission. We would stand a better chance of survival if we accommodated ourselves to this planet and viewed it appreciatively instead of sceptically and dictatorially. E B White.
To Albert Schweitzer who said "Man has lost the capacity to foresee and to forestall. He will end by destroying the earth.'
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In a letter written in January 1958, Olga Owens Huckins told me of her own bitter experience of a small world made lifeless, and so brought my attention sharply back to a problem with which I had long been concerned. (Acknowledgments)
There was once a town in the heart of America where all life seemed to be in harmony with its surroundings. (1. A Fable for Tomorrow)
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Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring was first published in three serialized excerpts in the New Yorker in June of 1962. The book appeared in September of that year and the outcry that followed its publication forced the banning of DDT and spurred revolutionary changes in the laws affecting our air, land, and water. Carson’s passionate concern for the future of our planet reverberated powerfully throughout the world, and her eloquent 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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Penguin Australia

2 editions of this book were published by Penguin Australia.

Editions: 0141184949, 0141391529

Recorded Books

An edition of this book was published by Recorded Books.

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