This project is an accessible exploration of the central role of auditory experience in American life, building from two core themes: that sound is the newest of our senses, having been reborn in twentieth century audio technologies; and that we vastly underrate spoken language and music as vital portals to the culture. This descriptive study offers a compelling counter-narrative to the bias for the visual fed by Canadian and contemporary American studies of media and communication.
Part I: Human Equipment
- Hearing and the Motivation to Listen
- Orality: Breaking the Codes of Culture
Part II: Natural, Organized and Disorganized Sound
- Functional Ambiance and the Clutter of Noise
- Capturing and Storing Sound
- The Refuge of Music
- The Wildcard of Acoustic Space.
- Hollywood and the Art of Sound Design
Part III: The Assault on Hearing
- Weaponizing Noise
- Creating Aural Islands
- Conclusion: Preserving the Most Consequential Sense
Paper 16.00 335 pages