The articles by Carson and Williams are focused on what may well be the greatest danger of the modern world: environmental pollution that causes drastic changes in nature and people’s organisms. While the authors describe different aspects of contamination, they agree that unless humanity starts treating the world with more respect, soon habitable land will be impossible to find, and no natural beauty will survive for humans to admire.
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Carson’s article is focused on describing the detrimental effect of pesticides on living organisms. The writer introduces the subject by way of a beautiful illustration of a town full of blossoms, singing birds, and freshwater. Soon, however, the picture changes: “a strange blight crept over the area” and “everywhere was a shadow of death” (Carson). Plants and animals die, and the spring is characterized as silent, “without voices”; no pollination takes place, and consequently, no fruit emerges (Carson). The author explains that the damaging alterations have become possible due to the use of a large number of pesticides in the area.
The dramatic effect of the story is intensified by the author’s meticulous choice of descriptive words. Carson boldly declares that “no witchcraft” of “enemy action” has “silenced the rebirth of new life.” She emphasizes that only humans are to blame for the severe damage. The same thought can be traced to William’s story, in which the writer analyzes the detrimental impact of nuclear bomb testing on people’s health.
Through the prism of her family history, Williams shows the big picture in terms of America’s attitude toward its people during the 1950s (608). Williams’s story is full of bitter irony that she employs to describe the tremendous losses of her family and many other families living in the neighborhood. The author’s family endured so many instances of breast cancer that she even came up with the title “The Clan of One-Breasted Women” (Williams 607). The author became so accustomed to the deadly disease that she admitted that “cancer was part of life” (Williams 7). The reason why so many people suffered was the nuclear testing performed in the area.
Williams was appalled by the reaction of the government, which said, “despite burns, blisters, and nausea,” that nothing should interfere with the series of tests (608). Like Carson, Williams urges people to take care of the world in which they live before it is too late. Both readings raise a vital question regarding the peaceful co-existence of scientific and technological advancements and humans.