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Sound Cultures - MUS211

One of the most distinctive features of the modern world is its sonic environment. Since the late 19th century we have been able to store and circulate sound on a mass scale, producing a sonic environment that is louder, more saturated and increasingly heterogeneous. We are overloaded with sound, making it one of the fastest growing causes of environmental pollution. Today we inhabit multiple and overlapping sonic worlds in a way once unimaginable. We define ourselves and our space acoustically and some of our most profound experiences are sonic. We will examine various aspects of sound, including its relationship with power, politics and technology. We explore what is unique about sonic experience; the history of sound; the production, distribution and consumption of sound; sound and music; sound and image; and sound and embodiment. We analyse the ways in which sonic experience challenges fundamental assumptions that underpin cultural studies including the mind/body split and the cultural construction of identity. This unit draws on a range of disciplines including sociology, media and performance studies, making it relevant to filmmakers, musicians, sound recordists, listeners, writers and to anyone wanting to deepen their understanding of human communication.

Credit Points: 3
When Offered:

S1 Day - Session 1, North Ryde, Day

Staff Contact(s): Dr Andrew Alter

12cp at 100 level or above Prerequisite Information


Unit Designation(s):
Unit Type:
Assessed As: Graded
Offered By:

Department of Media, Music, Communication and Cultural Studies

Faculty of Arts

Course structures, including unit offerings, are subject to change.
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