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Silent Spring Themes

This Study Guide consists of approximately 88 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of Silent Spring.
This section contains 923 words
(approx. 4 pages at 300 words per page)
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Themes

The Science of Pesticides

One of the great insights of Silent Spring is its grasp of the pesticide problem as a compound one. On one hand, there are the intrinsic dangers of these chemicals: their capacity to disrupt basic biological processes, their persistence in the environment, and so forth. But Carson knew that the manner in which a dangerous substance is also crucial. To understand how compounds like DDT and malathion have come to threaten life on a global scale, one has to examine what has been done with them. Each of the major themes of Silent Spring belongs then to one of two lines of argument; the first concerns the raw toxicity of pesticides, the second the recklessness with which they have been employed.

Along with atomic fallout, the synthetic pesticides that came into wide use after World War II are the most dangerous substances man has ever...

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This section contains 923 words
(approx. 4 pages at 300 words per page)
Purchase our Silent Spring Study Guide
Copyrights
Silent Spring from BookRags and Gale's For Students Series. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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