DDT, Silent Spring, and the Rise of Environmentalism: Classic Texts

Paperback | August 20, 2008

byThomas DunlapForeword byWilliam Cronon

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No single event played a greater role in the birth of modern environmentalism than the publication of Rachel Carson's Silent Spring and its assault on insecticides. The documents collected by Thomas Dunlap trace shifting attitudes toward DDT and pesticides in general through a variety of sources: excerpts from scientific studies and government reports, advertisements from industry journals, articles from popular magazines, and the famous "Fable for Tomorrow" from Silent Spring.

Beginning with attitudes toward nature at the turn of the twentieth century, the book moves through the use and early regulation of pesticides; the introduction and early success of DDT; the discovery of its environmental effects; and the uproar over Silent Spring. It ends with recent debates about DDT as a potential solution to malaria in Africa.

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No single event played a greater role in the birth of modern environmentalism than the publication of Rachel Carson's Silent Spring and its assault on insecticides. The documents collected by Thomas Dunlap trace shifting attitudes toward DDT and pesticides in general through a variety of sources: excerpts from scientific studies and go...

Thomas R. Dunlap is professor of history at Texas A & M University. He is the author of four books including Faith in Nature: Environmentalism as Religious Quest and DDT: Scientists, Citizens, and Public Policy.

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:160 pages, 9 × 6 × 0.4 inPublished:August 20, 2008Publisher:University Of Washington PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0295988347

ISBN - 13:9780295988344

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Table of Contents

Foreword by William CrononPreface and Acknowledgments Introduction

Part 1: BACKGROUNDViews of Nature

1. Stephen A. Forbes, "The Ecological Foundations of Applied Entomology"

2. Leland O. Howard, "The War against Insects"

-Pre-DDT Pesticides and DDT's Use in World War II

3. Paul Neal et al., "A Study of the Effects of Lead Arsenate Exposure on Orchardists and Consumers of Sprayed Fruit"

4. Paul Neal et al., "Toxicity and Potential Dangers of Aerosols, Mists, and Dusting Powders Containing DDT"

Part 2: DDT'S BRIGHT PROMISE AND NEGLECTED PROBLEMS (1942-1958)DDT as Miracle Chemical

5. Brigadier General James Stevens Simmons, "How Magic is DDT?"

6. "Aerosol Insecticides"

7. Clay Lyle, "Achievements and Possibilities in Pest Eradication"

-Early Warnings

8. Paul B. Dunbar, "The Food and Drug Administration Looks at Insecticides"

9. Clarence Cottam and Elmer Higgins, "DDT and Its Effect on Fish and Wildlife"

Part 3: RISING CONCERN ABOUT NEW PROBLEMSDDT, Food Chains, and Wildlife

10. Roy J. Barker, "Notes on Some Ecological Effects of DDT Sprayed on Elms"

11. Editorial from Bird Study

12. Derek A. Ratcliffe, "The Status of the Peregrine in Great Britain"

13. Robert Rudd, Pesticides and the Living Landscape

14. Thomas R. Dunlap, Interview with Joseph J. Hickey

15. Robert S. Strother, "Backfire in the War against Insects"

Part 4: THE STORM OVER SILENT SPRINGPublic Alarm

16. Morton Mintz, "'Heroine' of FDA Keeps Bad Drug Off Market"

17. Rachel Carson, "A Fable for Tomorrow"

-Reactions

18. President's Science Advisory Committee, Use of Pesticides

19. Robert H. White-Stevens, "Communications Create Understanding"

20. Edwin Diamond, "The Myth of the 'Pesticide Menace'"

21. Robert Gillette, "DDT: Its Days are Numbered, Except Perhaps in Pepper Fields"

Part 5: DDT AND MALARIA

22. Thomas Sowell, "Intended Consequences"

23. Thomas R. Hawkins, "Rereading Silent Spring" 24. May Berenbaum, "If Malaria's the Problem, DDT's Not the Only Answer"

Notes on Further Reading Credits Index

Editorial Reviews

No single event played a greater role in the birth of modern environmentalism than the publication of Rachel Carson's Silent Spring and its assault on insecticides. The documents collected by Thomas Dunlap trace shifting attitudes toward DDT and pesticides in general through a variety of sources: excerpts from scientific studies and government reports, advertisements from industry journals, articles from popular magazines, and the famous "Fable for Tomorrow" from Silent Spring. Beginning with attitudes toward nature at the turn of the twentieth century, the book moves through the use and early regulation of pesticides; the introduction and early success of DDT; the discovery of its environmental effects; and the uproar over Silent Spring. It ends with recent debates about DDT as a potential solution to malaria in Africa.Students can use this collection to gain greater understanding of the development of the environmental movement, changing ideas about progress, science, and technology, as well as changing ideas about the role of nature in the modern world. - David Stradling, University of Cincinnati