Peg the tipping point to Jane Jacobs's 1961 book The Death and Life of Great American Cities, which argued that car-centered urban development was killing communities, and Rachel Carson's 1962 book Silent Spring, which detailed how chemical pesticides originally designed to free humanity from disease were in fact killing the world. Looking back, you wonder: were the late 19th-century cartoon satirists the real visionaries?

Read Greg Cook's blog at gregcookland.com/journal.

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