Our feature this month is The Power of One Voice: A 50-Year Perspective on the Life of Rachel Carson, a groundbreaking documentary examining the life of Rachel Carson and the profound implications of her environmental work. Our ever-rousing discussion will be led by filmmakers Mark Dixon (of YERT fame) and Patty DeMarco (Director Emerita of the Rachel Carson Institute at Chatham University). Today, Rachel Carson remains a role model and inspiration for people across the globe, even as the controversy created by her challenge to the chemical industry continues unabated. By highlighting the power of Carson’s voice, we hope to inspire others to add their voices to this essential conversation. And preceding the main feature, we'll enjoy some local color in the form of WQED's Pittsburgh from the Air.
Perfect for classrooms, community events, or private viewing, The Power of One Voice pulls insights from a variety of speakers at the 50-year anniversary celebration of Silent Spring held at Chatham University and The National Aviary on April 11-12, 2012. The film explores the historical context of Carson’s remarkable achievements and renews her prescient warnings for the modern era.
Notable interviews include renowned Rachel Carson expert and historian, Linda Lear, and a rare interview with Rachel Carson’s adopted son, Roger Christie. Additional interviews include professor Louis Guillette, author Scott Weidensaul, U.S. Fish and Wildlife historian Mark Madison, journalist Don Hopey, as well as longtime Carson scholar Patricia DeMarco.
Part of Rachel Carson's inspiration was immersion in nature, from just outside Pittsburgh to the coast of Maine. We'll also be focusing on one dimension of that phenomenon, with clips from Song From The Forest -- a lovely film that contemplates the stark contrast between the peaceful jungle of the Central African Republic and the bustle of New York City. It follows the life and work of Louis Sarno, who settled in the jungle after being captured by the sounds of nature and the indigenous music of his adopted tribe. That film will be shown as part of Carnegie Mellon University's International Film Festival, the night before our Salon -- and the IFF organizers, who will be with us on Saturday to discuss the clips, are also extending a discount for admission to the full screening on Friday night ($5 instead of $10, including a panel discussion and Congolese food) to salongoers! I encourage you to attend if you can, and bring your reflections along on Saturday.
Why films this time (and in December & January)? During the winter (when weather can throw a wrench into the best-laid plans), we take a break from speakers to host screenings of important environmental films, often with the filmmakers on hand to lead the discussion. Please be sure to RSVP if you might come (email Maren with "salon" in the Subject line). General information and links to past Salon topics are below. In March, we'll be returning to our annual focus on Food; check back on MarensList for updates!
Bring food and/or drink to share if you can, along with musical instruments if you play. Check back on MarensList (where you can find information on all sorts of environmental and social justice events) for updates. And if you aren't yet on my list, if you're interested in Sustainability Salons (and our occasional house concert, simply contact me and I'll put you on my email list.
Sustainability Salon is an educational forum; a venue for discussion and debate about important environmental issues; a house party with an environmental theme. We usually have featured speakers on various aspects of a topic, interspersed with stimulating conversation, lively debate, delectable potluck food and drink, and music-making through the evening.
Past topics have included green community revitalization, solar power, climate change, environmental art, environmental education (Part I & Part II), community mapping projects, environmental journalism, grassroots action, community solar power, Marcellus shale development and community rights, green building, air quality, health care, more solar power, trees and park stewardship, alternative energy and climate policy, regional watershed issues, fantastic film screenings and discussions (led by filmmakers) over the winter with Sustainability Pioneers, films on consumption, Living Downstream, Bidder 70, YERT, Gas Rush Stories, and food, food, food, food, and more food.
Quite a few people have asked me what sorts of food to bring -- and my answer, as always, is whatever inspires you; I believe in the "luck" part of potlucks. Tasty noshings for the afternoon, hearty main dishes or scrumptious salads and sides for dinner, baked goods from biscuits and breads to brownies or baklava -- and/or beverages of any kind: wine, beer, hard or sweet cider (the latter we can mull if you like), juice, tea, whatever (I've got the kombucha covered, though it's always fun to compare). The more the merrier! Local fare is always particularly welcome, whether homegrown or boughten. Dishes containing meat or dairy are fine, though if it isn't really obvious please make a note of it.