rachel carson, a marine biologist by profession, was born on may 27, 1907 and died in 1964, at the young age of 56. but carson had already made her mark with the publication of her call to arms, "silent spring," two years earlier, in 1962. carson, at that time, was a well-established writer on natural history (her first major book, "the sea around us," had been published a decade earlier). "silent spring," however, made her into an environmental activist!
the books publication set off a storm of controversy in the united states over the use of pesticides. carson didn't advocate for a ban on all pesticides, only the most virulent forms. the upshot, almost a decade after its publication and in the wake of all the activism that ensued, was the ban on the use of ddt as a pesticide.
i've been a fan of rachel carson for years. from scientist to conservationist, to environmental activist pioneer, she was a legendary woman. happy birthday rachel carson!