By Veit Erlmann
Listening to Cultures is a well timed exam of the elusive, frequently evocative, and occasionally cacophonous auditory experience. It solutions such exciting questions as: Did humans in Shakespeare's time listen another way from us? In what method does know-how impact our ears? Why do humans in Egypt more and more take heed to taped spiritual sermons? Why did Enlightenment medical professionals think that song was once a vital treatment? What occurs acoustically in cross-cultural first encounters? The ear, up to the attention, nostril, mouth and hand, defines adventure. This e-book exhibits how sound bargains a clean new lens during which to ascertain tradition and intricate social concerns.
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Additional resources for Hearing Cultures: Essays on Sound, Listening and Modernity (Wenner Gren International Symposium Series)
In this sense, the discourse of listening recapitulates in the cultural sphere the “inner speech” that Lev Vygotsky found characterized the speech development of children between the ages of three and five (Kozulin 1986: xxxviii). In this context of intentional hearing, mishearing is certainly a drawback to clear, straightforward communication. On the other hand, it may preserve “the expression of intimate thoughts [not least the thought of what cannot be communicated] in linguistic form, thus making them communicative” (Kozulin 1986: xxxviii).
Each verse in this tipsy mock-epic invokes a different god or goddess, and in Morley’s manuscript the hand that is doing the writing appears to shift from verse to verse. What we seem to be witnessing are the hands of two different writers, each taking a turn at writing verses— which is just what the Olympian catalogue invites. If so, the two writers 32 Bruce R. Smith were playing out an act of “associative composition”—a kind of poetry contest in which each extempore poet tries to outdo the other, perhaps drinking all the while.
In 1996, a professional voice coach suggested that what we had in this scheme was not a linear continuum but a circle that began and ended in primal cries. Human exclamations of “oh,” “ah,” “mmm,” and the like take their place in the ambient world of animal sounds, wind, and rushing water. The resulting model inscribes an O, which is, in two dimensions at least, a representation of the shape of sound. 34 Bruce R. Smith Most historians of early modern England have focused their attention on a very narrow range of sounds, those involved in speech.