Silent Spring by Rachel Carson

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Introduction by Linda Lear with an afterward by Edward O. Wilson

50th Anniversary edition of the classic that launched the environmental movement.

Who is Rachel Carson?

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.

About the author:

Rachel Carson (1907–1964) spent most of her professional life as a marine biologist with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. By the late 1950s, she had written three lyrical, popular books about the sea, including the best-selling The Sea Around Us, and had become the most respected science writer in America. She completed Silent Spring against formidable personal odds, and with it shaped a powerful social movement that has altered the course of history.

Paperback book

Mariner Books; Anniversary edition, 2002

From the Introduction
by Linda Lear

Headlines in the New York Times in July 1962 captured the national
sentiment: "Silent Spring is now noisy summer." In the few months between
the New Yorker's serialization of Silent Spring in June and its publication in
book form that September, Rachel Carson's alarm touched off a national
debate on the use of chemical pesticides, the responsibility of science, and
the limits of technological progress. When Carson died barely eighteen
months later in the spring of 1964, at the age of fifty-six, she had set in
motion a course of events that would result in a ban on the domestic
production of DDT and the creation of a grass-roots movement demanding
protection of the environment through state and federal regulation. Carson's
writing initiated a transformation in the relationship between humans and the
natural world and stirred an awakening of public environmental