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Roots of the post Second World War environmental movements - Essay Example

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The Second World War was described as a ‘watershed’ that developed into environmental activism that spawned quickly during the 1960s.The Second World War was
a time of difficulty for many people around the world,it was also realized that the world was a small space that needed to be protected…
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Roots of the post Second World War environmental movements
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Download file to see previous pages The Second World War was described as a ‘watershed’ that developed into environmental activism that spawned quickly during the 1960s.The Second World War was
a time of difficulty for many people around the world,it was also realized that the world was a small space that needed to be protected from the constant destruction by man towards the environment. After the war, the 50s was a fast-paced moving world littered with images of the perfect life, the perfect housewife in advertisements. These images were to accommodate a growing push towards a more materialistic life as more and more inventions were being made and used. Among a lot of the products available during the 1950s were items that were actually hazardous to the environment like the hairspray from the musical ‘Hairspray’ for example that encouraged the use of hairspray in modern hairstyles as well as the release of dangerous chemicals such as CFC (Chlorofluorocarbon) and vinyl chloride which was a known carcinogen. It was also during the 1950s and the 1960s as more and more industrial accidents occurred that affected the environment that caused a revived concern about how we
treated our ecology. The modern livelihood of man was farfetched from the roots that they have begun as hunters and gatherers who are more ecologically aware and attentive to the adverse effects of man and their exploitation and manipulation of their environment (Sahlins 1971) but as industrialization began to boom even more quickly the way man lived prior to the Second World War was a far cry from contemporary man. ...
garments and transient objects.

Aside from the growth of industrialization man continued to try and change their
environment to bend to their own will. For example, if during Victorian times a garden was
simply a garden and ways to control pesticides from invading gardens were by utilizing
simple home remedies such as using vinegar. With the growth of industrialization and as
many more people became wealthy enough to own a garden albeit with lesser time due to
work quicker pesticides were used as a solution to pest problems in home gardens and in
industrial farms. In 1960, a naturalist by the name of Rachel Carson began to publish a series
of writings that were concerned with the adverse effects of the use of chemicals in the
control of natural environments (Nash 1990:192-194). For example, she argued that the use
of DDT which was only to get rid of weeds and pesticides affected the surroundings of the
weeds themselves therefore also pointlessly poisoning the earth for no apparent reason in
gardens except to make them look good and for industrial farms the ability of evolution
would only create and cause even more stronger pesticides who will be resistant to the
effects of the DDT and therefore needing even stronger more dangerous chemicals.
Although cries such as Carson on the effects of chemicals were heard but not fully heeded it
was also a backlash against government policies which tended to support industrial growth
rather than protect the environment for the 'benefit' of the people.


The politics of pollution during the 50s and 60s was a climate that favoured a 'little
bit' of pollution and some money to be made over the unalterable effects on the earth's
nature. For example, in the 1950s to the early 1960s the United ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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