Jul. 10, 2012

Listeners Weigh in on 'Silent Spring'

by Leslie Taylor

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SciFri Book Club on "Silent Spring"

The Science Friday Book Club met for the first time last week to talk about Rachel Carson’s classic book, "Silent Spring." If you missed the show (or you’re eager for more book talk) below are some tweets and comments from listeners, along with some links we like.

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Silent spring should be rquired reading for people who want to write negative things about public scientific policies. The author combined anecdotal, statistical, and historical data, especially data put out by the people she was arguing against in a form that was very difficult to fight. William S. Jackman
'Silent Spring' is 50. The Credit, and the Blame, It Deserves. - Big ThinkJun 19, 2012 ... In the 50 years since Silent Spring was published, the environmental movement it helped create has accomplished a grea...
I want to be like Rachel Carson. Key Font
Rachel Carson is my hero. She was a great writer, scientifically accurate, prescient, stoic (in the face of devastating cancer), generous, and brave in withstanding the attacks of the pesticide industry and their allies. Anti-science fanatics continue to attack her legacy. My question is: How can we best honor her and benefit from her work?
I remember reading the New York Times Sunday Book Review on Silent Spring when I was in the sixth grade! guess I was looking for a book report...I still remember it of timely.Lynne Friedman
There's Poison All Around Us Now - The New York TimesSo claims Rachel Carson in her provocative new book, “Silent Spring.” “Silent Spring” is similar in only one regard to Miss Carson'...
Unfortunately it has since been shown that it was pretty much pure fiction. There never was the danger she claimed. In addition, the bans on pesticide that resulted contributed directly to millions of deaths from insect born illnesses such as malaria and dengue fever, as well as the current problem with bedbugs.Andrew Kerber
Fateful Voice of a Generation Still Drowns Out Real ScienceJun 5, 2007 ... Fateful Voice of a Generation Still Drowns Out Real Science. By JOHN TIERNEY. For Rachel Carson admirers, it has not be...
Rachel Carson and the legacy of Silent Spring | Science | The ...The Observer, Sunday 27 May 2012 .... "In Silent Spring, Rachel Carson exposes these experts to public scrutiny and makes it clear...
Hey, Science Friday's new Book Club is talking about Silent Spring by Rachel Carson. Did you know she was at Univ. of Maryland when she wrote it?Lauretta Nagel
In Memoriam - The Life and Legacy of Rachel CarsonRachel Carson, the biologist and writer on nature and science, whose book .... In 1931 she became a member of the zoology staff of the ...
@scifri It seems that these topics are still relevant today. Even w/ pesticides and runoff used at home and agriculturally. #scifribookclubAllison B.
@scifri Monsanto! Suicide soy beans, they head dept of agriculture, its an out of control extention of pesticides.Craig Reynolds
Rachel Carson is the fault line between the conservation and the environmental movements - William Souder #scifribookclubScience Friday
Conservation, Preservation and Environmental Activism: A Survey of the Historical LiteratureThe American people have had a complex relationship with nature. On the one hand, we have exploited the nation's natural resources with d...
@scifri @wasouder1 Silent Spring raised my consciousness! It could save us from a future where the word "twitter" means only THIS . . .deborah england
@scifri @wasouder1 what do you think about GMO products? Are we having another silent spring? NamasteJyoti Chawla
@scifri How many human voices are silent because of the banning of DDT and their subsequent deaths due to malaria?Michael Dorsett
Bill Moyers Journal . Rachel Carson and DDT | PBSSep 21, 2007 ... By 1969, the WHO completely abandoned the Global Malaria Eradication effort. SILENT SPRING and the DDT Ban Rachel Cars...
Rachel Carson's birthday bashing - Africa - Salon.comJun 29, 2007 ... Rachel Carson has been shouldering a lot of blows lately, especially ... Beside a grim photo gallery of malaria victim...
@scifri She turned science into fetish.Robert Meyer
In 1970 my friend and I took turns reading Silent Spring aloud as we drove to the Memphis Blues Festival. When we pulled into state parks, they often would be spraying for mosquitoes -- and we quickly left! I hear that the book was going to be an article for New Yorker, but it kept getting longer, which they went along with, thank goodness! Years later I went back to school for my Environmental Studies degree, thanks to Rachel.Lauren Ayers
Carson was a very rational person, she stood on the side of science, not on the other side, rumor and innuendo - W. Souder #scifribookclubScience Friday
@scifri Must read: "The Highest Tide," a YA novel whose protagonist's favorite author is Rachel Carson. #booksAnonyMissBadger
@scifri, re Silent Spring (literally), is the dawn chorus (birds) less voluble & diverse now than 1970? (seems like it here, but no data)Nevada County Voices
Also in 1962 Jane Jacobs published her book, "The Life and Death of Great American Cities," which I and may others consider the "bible" of city and urban planning and design, as well as the birth of the New Urbanism movement and the revitalization of cities and downtowns.James Leese
Reconsidering Jane Jacobs: The Death and Life of American PlanningApr 25, 2011 ... Design Observer Places Observatory Change Observer Observer Media OBlog ... Jane Jacobs and the Death and Life of Amer...
@scifri, resurrecting Carson - what do you think her views would have been on biotech? (as in, GMO)Nevada County Voices
Great question @scifri Do you think Rachel Carson knew the power she had when she wrote Silent Spring?BeachChairScientist
@scifri #scifribookclub what I love about the book was her asking us over & over to think & to question what is happening.Helen Keniston Oney

About Leslie Taylor

Leslie is the online editor at and She has a background in oceanography and is passionate about getting non-scientists and young people to realize how cool science can be. She is also Science Friday's former web editor.

The views expressed are those of the author and are not necessarily those of Science Friday.
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