Between poetry and ecology. Rachel Carson, featured here in the Journal, with a global wish for Women’s Day.
Rachel Carson was born in Pennsylvania in the spring of 1907, in a village whose name promises that eternal season. She studied marine biology, her first field, in Maryland. And creative writing, for which she received her initial assignment in Massachusetts, at the National Bureau of Fish and Wildlife Protection.
Then came the Great Depression and its economic hardships. As well as hostility towards a talented woman in science and communication. Rachel wrote three bestsellers on ocean life. An Oscar-winning documentary was made from one. How, though, did she become the heroine of environmentalism that we all know today?
FROM NATURALISM TO ENVIRONMENTALISM
Today, March 8, is Women’s Day. Three women will be featured in the Il Bisonte Journal. All three lived in the first half of the last century, engaged in different struggles at the dawn of the modern environmental movement.
Three American women. From three opposite corners of the vast United States territory. We do not want them to be mirrors of all the women worldwide who are fighting to protect the climate, the animals, the landscape. We want to tell the stories of solitary heroines – but solitary, we’ll discover, in appearance only.
BETWEEN POETRY AND ECOLOGY
Silent Spring came out in 1962. Carson’s book drew the ire of the DDT industry. Rachel had discovered that the new insecticide blanketing the US in great clouds, ostensibly to protect the crops, was actually poisoning other living things, including birds. Indeed, it is the absence of their song that condemns us to a «Silent Spring.»
The author of this new bestseller, with such a sadly poetic title, died two years later of breast cancer. Like Nalleli Cobo – a heroine previously featured in the Journal – her grief had not stopped her from fighting for the health of others. Rachel, today, is not alone. There’s Nalleli, who shared her fate, to overcome the disease and win the fight against the oil industry. There are many other winning women who, like Rachel, are telling the story between poetry and ecology.