Rachel Carson's Silen Spring and Utilitarian Conservation

1408 Words6 Pages
Silent Spring and the Utilitarian Conservation Movement Post World War II, The Unites States had sweeping successes in the area of industrialization yet dealt widely with the consequences of the negative effects of development, as the nation was littered with trash. As a result of the war’s technological advances in chemicals, companies such as Dow Chemical who were developing rapid amounts for the war effort had a large surplus. Campaigns by companies coined slogans such as, “better living through chemistry” in order to spread the demand for wider chemical use in the American home. The surplus of chemicals led to the creation of chlorinated hydrocarbons and organic phosphates; and so began the consumer pesticide industry as the companies jabbed toward the consumer market. Alas, only small amounts of these ‘home sprays’ actually hit their target resulting in a mass contamination of soil, air, and food. Rachel Carson, a member of the US Fish and Wildlife service, quit her job as a biologist and devoted her full time to the research for her watershed book, Silent Spring. The book aimed to expose the unknown horrors of pesticides that scientists did not want the public to know about. An immediate New York Times best seller, Carson’s work had a massive impact, resulting into more than 40 bills passed in Congress to take back the environment. Carson maintains a striking message for the modern utilitarian conservation movement stressing the effects of unregulated chemical use and a push for governmental legislation with the central theme of nature existing for all of us. Through this analysis, we will scrutinize how Carson’s work directly influenced the federal utilitarian conservation movement through the 11 years after it’s publication. Chapter eleven, ‘Beyond the dreams of the Borgias’, describes the effects that chemicals had on the environment through the

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