Acoustic Ecology
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Personal Reflections on Sound

A Voice for Silence - Poetic, reflective essay about spending time listening with Gordon Hempton in the Hoh rainforest on the Olympic Peninsula. [GO THERE]

No Silence, Please - Chris Watson reflects on time in an anechoic chamber and the human need for sounds around us. This essay is on the BBC website: [GO THERE]

On a Clear Day I Can Hear Forever - Gary Ferrington. On the soundings of a medium sized city. [GO THERE]

The Last Laugh - Wendy Liles. On the curse--and blessing--of not being able to shut out the sounds of the city. [GO THERE]

Take a Listening Walk and Learn to Listen - Gary Ferrington. A very accessible introduction to soundwalking, and the simple act of paying attention to sound.[GO THERE]

Melting Ice and Stranded Penguins: A Story of Global Warming - Listen to an 8 minute radio journalism piece by Kathy Turco, reporting from Antarctica. [GO THERE]

Society and Sound

Speaking with Animal Toungues - David Abram. Rich reflections on the ways that humans grew with, and away from, a sensory awareness of the world around us. [GO THERE]

The Eternal Story, in its Original Language - Jim Cummings. An introduction to the ways that soundscape producers are offering a sonic guidepost to remembering. [GO THERE]

From Ethnomusicology to Echo-Muse-Ecology - Steven Feld. On the ways that environment gives rise to music-making in the Papua New Guinea rainforest; and the transformation of experience in an academic field researcher upon discovery of the emerging field of Acoustic Ecology. [GO THERE]

Acoustic Responsibility - A Concept Whose Time Has Come - Peter Donnelly. Putting our social tolerance for noise in perspective, and calling for a renewed sense of responsibility for our soundmaking. [GO THERE]

History and Philosophy of Soundscape Art

Concertos for the Forest - Walter Tilgner's European Sound Images: Hans Ulrich Werner. A biographical essay on one of Europe's formative nature sound recordists; also serves to introduce several creative and social concerns common to many in the field. [GO THERE]

The Parodox of Listening to Recorded Nature - Jim Cummings. On the strange concept of extracting a single sensory element -- sound -- and intending thereby to encourage a more integrated experience of the world we walk in day to day. Also addresses the fact that no soundscape recording can pretend to duplicate even the sonic experience of a place.

Environmental Sound Matter - Francisco Lopez. An extended essay that takes exception to many of the standard ways of considering nature sound production, and makes a case for a "profound listening" that is quite separate from place-centered reverie. [GO THERE]

Schizophrenia v. l'objet sonore - Francisco Lopez. Another provocative foray, contrasting two major perspectives on soundscapes: one that sees this work as healing a rift between humanity and nature, and another that is more interested in the new and uncharted artistic territories of composing with sound objects, without reference to their source. [GO THERE]

Get Out of Whatever Cage: Avant Garde in the Natural World - David Rothenberg. Rambling through music, society, and the sounds of the world with John Cage whispering in his ear, Rothenberg reflects on the influences on, and of, Cage. [GO THERE]

Singing in Thin Air - René van Peer. Reflections on the tenuous threads connecting human musics with the songs of the natural world. [GO THERE]

Music: Abstraction and Extraction - René van Peer. An insightful overview of the various philosophical and stylistic approaches to environmental sound production, from a European music journalist who is among the world's most widely experienced soundscape reviewers. [GO THERE]

Hildegard Westekamp: A Monograph on her work - Andra McCartney. Academic paper on Westerkamp's approach to soundscape composition, including detailed analysis of several works. (will open in new window) [GO THERE]

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