The Audible Past: Cultural Origins of Sound Reproduction / Edition 1

The Audible Past: Cultural Origins of Sound Reproduction / Edition 1

by Jonathan Sterne, Sterne
     
 

ISBN-10: 082233013X

ISBN-13: 9780822330134

Pub. Date: 03/13/2003

Publisher: Duke University Press Books

The Audible Past explores the cultural origins of sound reproduction. It describes a distinctive sound culture that gave birth to the sound recording and the transmission devices so ubiquitous in modern life. With an ear for the unexpected, scholar and musician Jonathan Sterne uses the technological and cultural precursors of telephony, phonography, and

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Overview

The Audible Past explores the cultural origins of sound reproduction. It describes a distinctive sound culture that gave birth to the sound recording and the transmission devices so ubiquitous in modern life. With an ear for the unexpected, scholar and musician Jonathan Sterne uses the technological and cultural precursors of telephony, phonography, and radio as an entry point into a history of sound in its own right. Sterne studies the constantly shifting boundary between phenomena organized as "sound" and "not sound." In The Audible Past, this history crisscrosses the liminal regions between bodies and machines, originals and copies, nature and culture, and life and death.

Blending cultural studies and the history of communication technology, Sterne follows modern sound technologies back through a historical labyrinth. Along the way, he encounters capitalists and inventors, musicians and philosophers, embalmers and grave robbers, doctors and patients, deaf children and their teachers, professionals and hobbyists, folklorists and tribal singers. The Audible Past tracks the connections between the history of sound and the defining features of modernity: from developments in medicine, physics, and philosophy to the tumultuous shifts of industrial capitalism, colonialism, urbanization, modern technology, and the rise of a new middle class.

A provocative history of sound, The Audible Past challenges theoretical commonplaces such as the philosophical privilege of the speaking subject, the visual bias in theories of modernity, and static descriptions of nature. It will interest those in cultural studies, media and communication studies, the new musicology, and the history of technology.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780822330134
Publisher:
Duke University Press Books
Publication date:
03/13/2003
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
472
Sales rank:
389,798
Product dimensions:
6.13(w) x 9.25(h) x (d)

Table of Contents

List of Figures
List of Abbreviations for Archival and Other
Historical Materials Cited
Acknowledgments
Hello!1
1Machines to Hear for Them31
2Techniques of Listening87
3Audile Technique and Media137
4Plastic Aurality: Technologies into Media179
5The Social Genesis of Sound Fidelity215
6A Resonant Tomb287
Conclusion: Audible Futures335
Notes353
Bibliography415
Index437

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