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At points, oceans covered much of North America between the Appalachians and the Rockies and have left their traces to this day. Carson tells the story of oceans, mixing the latest scientific data available to her with a lyrical account of this most salient feature of our planet.

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Consider this passage about sedimentation:. I see the steady, unremitting, downward drift of materials from above, flake upon flake, layer upon layer—a drift that has continued for hundreds of millions of years, that will go on as long as there are seas and continents. It began when the first rains fell on the barren rocks and set in motion the forces of erosion.

It was accelerated when living creatures developed in the surface waters and the discarded little shells of lime or silica that had encased them in life began to drift downward to the bottom. Silently, endlessly, with the deliberation of earth processes that can afford to be slow because they have so much time for completion, the accumulation of the sediments has proceeded.

So little in a year, or in a human lifetime, but so enormous an amount in the life of earth and sea. With her writing, what sounds like a dull subject, sedimentation, takes on wonder as it is likened to an unremitting snowfall. It is a skill we see over and over in her work as she takes facts and explains them in a way that captures the imagination.

The Sea Around Us

She explores the seasonal cycles of life, the topography of the ocean floor, the formation of volcanic islands and their disappearances , and the evidence of historic rises and falls of the oceans, which in the past, and likely in the future, will inundate much of North America, as well as other coastal and low areas around the world. Even when she wrote, oceans were rising and glacial melts were in process, but in her time this was still seen as merely a cyclical occurrence, unrelated to human causes.

She explores the movements of the oceans, from wave actions to tidal patterns to the vast sea currents that circulate around the globe. Those who associate Carson with environmental activism will be surprised at the lack of advocacy in this book. What one encounters instead is description that captures the imagination and awakens us to the wonder that surrounds us.

And perhaps this is as vital as any advocacy, because we must first love and deeply care for that for which we advocate. You are commenting using your WordPress. You are commenting using your Google account. You are commenting using your Twitter account.

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The Dubliners - The Sea Around Us (Harstad Norway_1980)

Published in , The Sea Around Us was a phenomenal success. Rachel Carson's rare ability to combine scientific insight with moving, poetic prose catapulted her book to first place on The New York Times bestseller list, where it remained on top for thirty-one consecutive weeks.

The Sea Around Us by Rachel Carson, First Edition - AbeBooks

It stayed on the list for more than a year and a half and ultimately sold well over a million copies, has been translated into 28 languages, inspired an Academy Award-winning documentary, and won both the National Book Award and the John Burroughs Medal. This commemorative edition has over beautiful, full color illustrations from all over the world--everything from breaching whales, Christmas Tree worms and phosphorescent shrimp, to fur seals, flashlight fish, and giant squid.

Ballard, renowned for his role in finding the Titanic as well as for his discovery of life around deep-sea hydrothermal vents; and an afterword by Brian J. Skinner, an eminent geologist and former president of the Geological Society of America. The book itself remains as fresh today as when it first appeared. Carson's writing teems with stunning, memorable images--the newly formed Earth cooling beneath an endlessly overcast sky; the centuries of nonstop rain that created the oceans; incredibly powerful tides moving billion tons of water daily in the Bay of Fundy.

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Quite simply, she captures the mystery and allure of the ocean with a compelling blend of imagination and expertise. For anyone who loves to wander the shore, sail the ocean, or ponder what lies beneath the waves, this illustrated special edition of The Sea Around Us will make a perfect gift. A biologist, writer, and ecologist, she also wrote Under the Sea Wind and Silent Spring, one of the seminal books of the environmental movement in America.