Technological Cultures of Sound

The societal role of sound, and the ways in which we listen, are subject to historical transformation and are strongly intertwined with technological developments, but it is not a simple case of technology-driven change: the technologies do not pop out of thin air and influence how we listen, but are embedded in social relations and cultural practices. This research theme deals with questions such as: how did sound become orchestrated as a public problem, as expressed in the anti-noise movements of the twentieth century? Indeed, what cultural meanings did the inhabitants of cities give to their sonic surroundings in different time periods? How on earth has it been become possible that we value the car as a place in which to find peace and quiet, or to listen to our favourite music as if it is a mobile listening booth, even though it was still a highly noisy vehicle at the start of the twentieth century? And what is the role of sound in science?


Projects on technological cultures of sound