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By the Book: Linda Lear

In 1962, Rachel Carson the acclaimed author of prize-winning books on the sea, touched off a national debate on the proper use of pesticides with the publication of Silent Spring. Her message was extremely controversial.  In 2018, her conviction that human behavior can impact the whole biota adversely, and her challenge to scientific, corporate and government responsibility are central to the our national debate on the future of all life.

Join the Library Society as we host author and academic, Linda Lear, as she dives into the impact of Rachel Carson and her works. This event is free and open to the public. To RSVP, call 843-723-9912 or email dreutter@charlestonlibrarysociety.org

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Linda Lear, biographer and historian, is a graduate of Connecticut College,
received her MA from Columbia University and holds a Ph.D. in History from George
Washington University. She was Research Professor of Environmental History at
George Washington University and Senior Research Scholar in History at the University
of Maryland, Baltimore County. She has been writing biography full time for almost 20
years. She is the author of the acclaimed biography of Rachel Carson, Rachel Carson:
Witness for Nature, and numerous academic and popular articles on Carson, as well as
the introductions to all of Carson’s published works, including the centennial edition of
Silent Spring. Lear's biography of Carson was awarded the prize for the best book on
“Women in Science” by the History of Science Society. It was also a New York Times
Book of the Year. Her biography has been translated into eight languages. Lear was
the recipient of a Beinecke Fellowship at Yale University and served as a Smithsonian
Institution Senior Fellow in Washington for eight years.


Dr Lear’s biography of the famous artist and children’s writer, Beatrix Potter: A
Life in Nature, was published jointly in 2007 by Allen Lane for Penguin Inc. UK and St.
Martin’s Press in the US. It was chosen as “Book of the Week” by BBC4 Radio and
read during Christmas week 2006. It was awarded the Lakeland Book of the Year prize
for 2007 and the Bookends Prize for Biography. Delta Kappa Gamma, the national
women’s sorority, awarded Linda their literary prize and achievement award in 2008.
In 2008, Lear was awarded an Honorary Doctorate in Humane Letters by
Chatham University – Rachel Carson’s alma mater – for her work on women and the
environment. She served as a Trustee at her alma mater, Connecticut College, from
2004 to 2012, and in 2008 she established The Linda Lear Center for Special
Collections and Archives where her papers on Carson and Potter are open for research.
She serves on the Board of the Freedom to Write Fund, and reviews for the Washington
Independent Review of Books, and the Rachel Carson Council.


Linda lives in Bethesda, Maryland and Charleston, South Carolina with her
husband and three Norfolk terriers, and is active in animal rescue and conservation
organizations, and the Catesby Commemorative Trust.