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American Experience; Rachel Carson's Silent Spring

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American Experience
Rachel Carson's Silent Spring
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Series Description

Premiered October 1988 As television's longest-running, most-watched history series, American Experience brings to life the incredible characters and epic stories that helped form this nation. Now in its eighteenth season, the series has produced over 180 programs and garnered every major broadcast award. Series release date: 10/1988

Program Description

By the time she published Silent Spring in 1963, Rachel Carson had suffered a bout with cancer and the admonishment of friends who tried to convince her that a book on the chemical poisoning of the environment was too depressing for anyone to read. Carson had been a consulting biologist for the federal government's Fish and Wildlife Department when she first took note of the unregulated use of pesticides and herbicides--especially DDT--in "Agricultural Control" farming. Widespread use of these chemicals destroyed wildlife habitats and threatened human communities. Magazines refused to publish Carson's stories about the danger because they were afraid of losing advertising. When Silent Spring was published, Carson was viciously attacked. Huge sums of money were spent to discredit her. While the scientific methods she used were not impeccable, her message about the environment as an interrelated organic system struck a popular nerve. The smear campaign backfired. Silent Spring sparked a revolution in government environmental policy and became instrumental in creating a new ecological consciousness. This is the story of how one scientist's courage changed the way we think about our world.

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Broadcast program

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Chicago: “American Experience; Rachel Carson's Silent Spring,” WGBH Media Library & Archives, accessed October 28, 2016, http://openvault.wgbh.org/catalog/V_8668F3C476174F22AF38C2111A0AA780.
MLA: “American Experience; Rachel Carson's Silent Spring.” WGBH Media Library & Archives. Web. October 28, 2016. <http://openvault.wgbh.org/catalog/V_8668F3C476174F22AF38C2111A0AA780>.
APA: American Experience; Rachel Carson's Silent Spring. Boston, MA: WGBH Media Library & Archives. Retrieved from http://openvault.wgbh.org/catalog/V_8668F3C476174F22AF38C2111A0AA780
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