The authoritative biography of the marine biologist and nature writer whose book Silent Spring inspired the global environmentalist movement.
In a career that spanned from civil service to unlikely literary celebrity, Rachel Carson became one of the world’s seminal leaders in conservation. The 1962 publication of her book Silent Spring was a watershed event that led to the banning of DDT and launched the modern environmental movement.
Growing up in poverty on a tiny Allegheny River farm, Carson attended the Pennsylvania College for Women on a scholarship. There, she studied science and writing before taking a job with the newly emerging Fish and Wildlife Service. In this definitive biography, Linda Lear traces the evolution of Carson’s private, professional, and public lives, from the origins of her dedication to natural science to her invaluable service as a brilliant, if reluctant, reformer.
Drawing on unprecedented access to sources and interviews, Lear masterfully explores the roots of Carson’s powerful connection to the natural world, crafting a “fine portrait of the environmentalist as a human being” (Smithsonian).
“Impressively researched and eminently readable . . . Compelling, not just for Carson devotees but for anyone concerned about the environment.” —People
“[A] combination of meticulous scholarship and thoughtful, often poignant, writing.” —Science
“A sweeping, analytic, first-class biography of Rachel Carson.” —Kirkus Reviews