What is the main idea of Silent Spring?  

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

Silent Spring is an ecological work meant to delineate the potential dangers of pesticides on the environment. Through her research, Rachel Carson discovered that pesticides such as DDT could have widespread effects on the environment at large—and that it would be detrimental to a vast number of species, not only the intended plants. Because of this, she decided to chronicle the ideas in this book.

Her main point of emphasis is that pesticides are not limited to the intended use—they are indiscriminate in their deleterious effects and can harm a wide array of species. The main purpose is to elucidate the idea that humans can be negatively impacted by the use of such pesticides—even potentially lethally, in addition to the harm the present to the environment.

Rachel Carson's main idea in Silent Spring is that pesticides sprayed on crops work their way up the food chain to ultimately have a negative effect on human beings. This seems like a commonplace idea now, but in the early 1960s,...

(The entire section contains 4 answers and 660 words.)

Unlock This Answer Now

Start your 48-hour free trial to unlock this answer and thousands more. Enjoy eNotes ad-free and cancel anytime.

Start your 48-Hour Free Trial
Approved by eNotes Editorial Team