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Silent Spring Quotes

22 of the best book quotes from Silent Spring
  1. #1
    “The fact that every meal we eat carries its load of chlorinated hydrocarbons is the inevitable consequence of the almost universal spraying or dusting of agricultural crops with these poisons.”
  2. #2
    “By their very nature chemical controls are self-defeating, for they have been devised and applied without taking into account the complex biological systems against which they have been blindly hurled.”
  3. #3
    “The balance of nature is not a status quo; it is fluid, ever shifting, in a constant state of adjustment. Man, too, is part of this balance.”
  4. #4
    “In nature, nothing exists alone.”
  5. #5
    “We in this generation, must come to terms with nature, and I think we’re challenged as mankind has never been challenged before to prove our maturity and our mastery, not of nature, but of ourselves.”
  6. #6
    “Can anyone believe it is possible to lay down such a barrage of poisons on the surface of the Earth without making it unfit for all life?”
  7. #7
    “Water must be thought of in terms of the chains of life it supports.”
  1. #8
    “Over increasingly large areas of the United States, spring now comes unheralded by the return of the birds, and the early mornings are strangely silent where once they were filled with the beauty of bird song.”
  2. #9
    “The more clearly we can focus our attention on the wonders and realities of the universe about us, the less taste we shall have for destruction.”
  3. #10
    “Even in the vast and mysterious reaches of the sea we are brought back to the fundamental truth that nothing lives to itself.”
  4. #11
    “Man’s attitude toward nature is today critically important simply because we have now acquired a fateful power to alter and destroy nature. But man is a part of nature, and his war against nature is inevitably a war against himself.”
  5. #12
    “The history of life on earth has been a history of interaction between living things and their surroundings.”
  6. #13
    “In this now universal contamination of the environment, chemicals are the sinister and little-recognized partners of radiation in changing the very nature of the world—the very nature of its life.”
  7. #14
    “We are rightly appalled by the genetic effects of radiation; how then can we be indifferent to the same effect in chemicals that we disseminate widely in our environment.”

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  1. #15
    “The world was then full of disease germs, as today it is full of carcinogens.”
  2. #16
    ““. . .the development of resistance to insecticides is changing the genetic factors of insects and perhaps other organisms . . . Some experts warn of subtle but far-reaching vegetational shifts”
  3. #17
    “If Darwin were alive today the insect world would delight and astound him with its impressive verification of his theories of the survival of the fittest. Under the stress of intensive chemical spraying the weaker members of the insect populations are being weeded out. Only the strong and fit remain to defy our efforts to control them.”
  4. #18
    “It is an extraordinary fact that the deliberate introduction of poisons into a reservoir is becoming a fairly common practice . . . The procedure has a strange, Alice-in-Wonderland quality”
  5. #19
    “Responsible public health officials have pointed out that the biological effects of chemicals are cumulative over long periods of time, and that the hazard to the individual may depend on the sum of the exposures received throughout his lifetime.”
  6. #20
    “The transformation of matter into energy in the cell is an ever-flowing process, one of nature’s cycles of renewal, like a wheel endlessly turning . . . one of the wonders of the living world”
  7. #21
    “The ‘control of nature’ is a phrase conceived in arrogance, born of the Neanderthal age of biology and the convenience of man.”
  8. #22
    “For mankind as a whole, a possession infinitely more valuable than individual life is our genetic heritage. . . Yet genetic deterioration through man-made agents is the menace of our time.”
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Children's Books About Biology