Happy Birthday, Rachel Carson
Today is the birthday of Rachel Carson (1907 - 1964), an American marine biologist, popular author and conservationist whose 1969 book, Silent Spring, brought environmental issues into the mainstream and helped kickstart the global environmental movement.
If you’ve been following me for a while, you may have noticed that environmental conservation is one of my recurring subjects. It isn’t easy to find humour in such a serious topic but I try my best. My interest in raising awareness on environmental issues may have been fuelled by my wife, who works in this field, but the earliest influence came from my father.
My father, who is now retired, studied Plant Pathology in Taiwan back in the late 1960s. As a landscape officer with JTC, he made significant contributions to the greening efforts of Singapore in her early years of independence, including the development of the Chinese and Japanese Gardens at Jurong Lake (which used to be a river). He introduced me to the idea of reusing and recycling long before it became popular in Singapore. A few years ago, when I discovered the writings of Rachel Carson, I was pleasantly surprised to find on my father’s shelf, a Chinese translation of Silent Spring. He had purchased it in Taiwan back in 1971, when he was only 24 years old. Like most of his books, it is well-worn and annotated with his handwritten notes. He had even decorated the content page with a tiny sticker of Oscar the Grouch (get the symbolism?) from Sesame Street, a show that had debuted the same year the book was published. On this special day, I’d like to share with you some photos of my father’s old book as a tribute to both Rachel Carson and my father. #rachelcarson #environmentalism #silentspring #conservation #connect2earth #singapore #myfather #environmentalscience #womeninscience #womenpower #nature #senseofwonder