It's more than 40 years because Dr Seuss very first published The Lorax, his classic tale that needless consumerism and environmental ruin. However as a new film version is released in the US, what is the book really all about?

As schoolchildren throughout the human being can attest, The Lorax is the story of one ambitious businessman, a Once-ler, that reaps whole forest of Truffula trees to render their soft tufts right into luxurious thneeds.

The Lorax, who speaks because that the trees, alerts of the dire consequences of such environmental mismanagement - however his post goes unheeded till it's as well late.

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On Friday, the very same day the book's writer would have actually turned 108, the orange, moustachioed ecological activist understand as the Lorax make his big-screen debut in a 3D animated film by universal Studios.

It's to be a long and circuitous roadway for the book, i m sorry like most of Seuss's books, discovered its beginning in his personal experience.

But simply what is the Lorax about? over the past 40 years, the book has meant various things at different times.

The Lorax was released in 1971, simply as the eco-friendly movement began to take host (the very first Earth job was organized in new York the year before).

It is collection in a dark, murky post-apocalyptic landscape, destroyed by the Once-ler's exploitation that the herbal world. The repercussion of too much industrialisation is clear. But it ends v a glimmer that hope, together a single Truffula particle is left behind.

The book went on come sell more than 200 million copies, and is widely used as a teaching assist for children's class on environmentalism. Numerous university groups committed to conservation have named themselves "The Lorax".

Though many of the Seuss archives are housed in ~ the college of California, mountain Diego, the Lorax drawings are uncovered in Austin, in ~ the presidential library of lindon B Johnson.

Johnson, president from 1963 to 1969, and his mam were staunch environmentalists. She was well-known for she highway beautification projects; he defended nine million acre of federal land.

When he heard the the publication was under way, he called Seuss - unprompted - to give thanks to him in breakthrough for donating the original artwork come the Johnson archive.

He likewise implies the Once-ler depends on an aggressive, saturating advertising campaign to encourage the thneeds, shapeless apparel of dubious utility.

"The Lorax to be a brilliant summary of capitalism as we recognize it," says Peter Barnes, a mountain Francisco businessman and author of Capitalism 3.0.

"If girlfriend look at every the advertising, every the crap the our economic climate churns out, many of it is thneeds, it's not stuff we in reality need. It's stuff we're made to think us need."

"Implicit there, is that unless we do something around that, over there ain't going to be any kind of trees, birds or fish left."


Seuss's studio in san Diego overlooked the Pacific and also the see was framed by beautiful eucalyptus trees, claims Steve Brezzo, a friend, neighbour and also former art people colleague.

When developers sought permission to fell them to construct residential property, Seuss launched a campaign in opposition.

"In his common Seussian fashion, he started to develop this whole an excellent scenario about saving the trees," says Mr Brezzo.

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The exact same cannot be said for the Lorax, who failed to conquer corporate greed. "Business is business! and business must grow, regardless of crummies in tummies, girlfriend know."

Pro-business groups, including loggers, struck it as environmental propaganda and also the book was also banned in some schools and also libraries.

Recently, Fox organization host Lou Dobbs warned the the movie adaptation of The Lorax was indoctrinating youngsters against large industry.