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Silent Spring Analysis

1785 words - 8 pages

Silent Spring Analysis

Silent Spring is a book that makes just about everyone think, except for the major chemical companies that it was attacking. This is definitely one book that help shaped how we look at the environment today and also how we approach it. Rachel Carson aimed for a book that was going to open peoples eyes to what really was happening and who and what was doing it. She nailed this right on the head, while the book was very technical when it came to talking about the details of DDT, it was written at a level that everyone could understand and relate too. Easily this could be one of the most important books written in American history, where would we be without it and ...view middle of the document...

While the book wasn’t a novel or narrative, it still had that kind of feeling, rather than like your reading a science book. In doing so, she opened the floodgates for everyone to be able to relate to what was really going on in their own backyards. Along with laying the groundwork for the entire book in the first chapter, Carson also gives a grim scene of what was happening to people’s yards and farms.
With the scene set for the readers, Carson gives some grim examples of what was going on, of which, people were able to look out their own window and see the results of these chemicals. The title of the book fits perfectly with the ugly scene she paints of birds not signing, eggs not hatching and trees not producing fruit like they had the spring before. The biggest point she seemed to make right away was how sudden these events took place without anyone really knowing what was going on. “Many creatures died. Sometimes children would be outside playing and suddenly they would be stricken with something and die only a few hours later. People wondered what had happened to the birds. The birds that remained were often so sickly that they couldn’t fly. Chickens still laid eggs, but the eggs didn’t hatch. The apple trees put out blossoms, but no bees came to pollinate them. The countryside that once looked so pretty now looked dry and withered. People noticed a fine, white dust had settled all over the leaves and in the gutters of their houses. The problem with this land didn’t come from witchcraft, but from the people themselves.” (Carson). This quote really hits home her entire point of the book. At the time of the book, people hadn’t really even thought of the downside of these kinds of chemicals, they only thought that they were making the world a better place to live in, rather than completely killing it.
After the first few chapters I was hooked on the book. Even now in 2011, it makes a point that people can still understand and relate too. I believe if this book were not written the way it was, people would have just brushed it off as another “hippy” attempt to save the environment, but it was a science report written in a way that everyone could understand and relate with. If people were not able to open their own backdoor and see the results Carson was describing, this book would have probably never been what it is today. In the second chapter, she compares the use of these chemicals to nuclear war, which at the time was a threat that people seemed to understand. “People are very worried about the threat of a nuclear war destroying the planet. They should think about the use of these chemicals that are being poured into the environment. These chemicals get into the tissues of plants and animals.” (Carson). This at the time would’ve been a good way to get into the minds of people. Also in this chapter she gets into explaining the history of insects and how they even become a “problem” to people in the United States. This relates well to...

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