Priscilla Coit Murphy '67: The Life and Afterlife of a Book

Priscilla Coit Murphy '67

Priscilla Coit Murphy '67 discusses the continuing impact of Rachel Carson's Silent Spring.

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In What a Book Can Do: The Publication and Reception of Silent Spring, Priscilla Coit Murphy '67 explores the history of how Rachel Carson's 1962 bestseller came to be published and, through its life in the media, put the issues of pesticide abuse and environmental awareness into the public eye.

In addition to graduating from Swarthmore, Murphy earned an M.A. from American University and a Ph.D. in media history from the School of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of North Carolina- Chapel Hill. Murphy is currently an independent scholar, focusing predominantly on the interaction between books and the media. She believes that this interaction is the framework for public discussion and one that should be salvaged in an age of declining physical publication.