"Rumblings of an Avalanche:
Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring"

Presented by Dr. Linda Lear, author of
Rachel Carson: Witness for Nature

Thursday, September 27 (6:30 p.m.)

Nelson Auditorium
North Carolina State University
On September 27, 1962, Rachel Carson’s famous book, Silent Spring, hit the newsstands. The book has been called one of the most influential works and Rachel Carson one of the most influential people of the 20th Century. Many people mark the start of the modern environmental movement—good or bad—with the publication of Silent Spring.
The book has been translated into dozens of languages and sold many millions of copies. Now, on the 50th anniversary of its arrival, NC State has the privilege of hearing from the world’s foremost expert on Rachel Carson, Dr. Linda Lear. Please join us for this significant event. For information about the series of events at NC State in exploration of the impact and meaning of Silent Spring, visit http://cnr.ncsu.edu/blogs/rachel-carson/

Duración / Length:   2’ 05” min

September 2012 

Medea, jealous of Jason’s new bride, gave her a poisoned robe. The bride died instantly. As Rachel Carson writes in Silent Spring, we are also now becoming  masters of death by indirection. We transform other living creatures into poison. Death elixirs -- we don’t recognize the devils of our own creation.

Silent devils most of the times.

Like radiation.

I mixed the buzzing and beeping of the UVB-76[1] station streaming alive (recorded on September 18th at 11pm) with the rustling of trees in different frequencies (recorded on September 3rd at 1pm at the ecological reserve of the Pedregal de San Angel, Mexico City) while my computerized voice reconstructed three brief phrases from Rachel Carson’s book. It’s a small way to celebrate its 50th anniversary. 
The UVB-76 station or Buzzer, has been associated frequently with the so-called Dead Man’s hand device. One of the cold war’s souvenirs. On reading Rachel’s writings, about man playing with the atom, awakening an unnatural kind of radiation, I recalled the signals of this phantom Soviet radio station. In my mind, it is the sound I would give these intangible devils we have created (yet have not acknowledged). Radiation turns nature into poison. Nature, though altered, continues. We are the ones in danger of disappearing. 

-- Martha Riva Palacio 

[1] Audio file kindly authorized by SDR MK1 UVB76 Repeater: Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0) license 


starting on Thursday, September 27, 
and running throughout autumn 2012

locations: nationwide & around the world 
The Borderbend Arts Collective presents "Silent Spring & Autumn 2012," which begins 50 years (to the day!) after the publication of Silent Spring by Rachel Carson. "Silent Spring & Autumn 2012," which involves individuals and organizations nationwide, happens during the Seventh Annual Chicago Calling Arts Festival, and it continues throughout autumn 2012. 

Borderbend has an open call for contributions to Silent Spring & Autumn 2012. Here are several possibilities--
  • You could organize and/or participate in an event that commemorates the 50th anniversary of Silent Spring’s publication—on Thursday, September 27. Such an event could be a poetry reading, concert, or some other public event. 
  • You could mark that date in some other way—by privately celebrating that book, as well as Rachel Carson’s legacy. 
  • You could create something (a poem, painting, song, etc.) which is inspired by Silent Spring or another aspect of Rachel Carson’s legacy. 
  • Your event and/or creative response might respond to one or more of these questions -- 1) How are you planning to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Silent Spring’s publication?, 2) What hopes do you have for our environment, nature, and our planet—which resonate with the hopes and ideals that Rachel Carson had? 
If you’d like to participate in "Silent Spring & Autumn 2012," email info@borderbend.org, with Silent Spring / Chicago Calling in the subject line. 

Info about “Silent Spring & Autumn 2012” events and contributions will appear at: http://www.silentspringat50.org/silent-spring--autumn-2012.html. Updates regarding "Silent Spring & Autumn 2012” will be sent out via Borderbend’s website, facebook, twitter, and so on.