Sounding Out the Humanities

As someone who works on Sound Studies, I am constantly looking for new ways to effectively incorporate sound into my teaching. In the past I have asked my students to listen to podcasts like Radiolab and This American Life and use them as models to create their own. I have asked them to analyze music videos, practice “close listening” with thematically relevant songs, and consider the complex relationship between written and oral modes of communication. In this panel I am interested in discussing how sound is used in the classroom and what kinds of benefits students gain from these multi-sensory projects. One of the problems I have faced with my own students is that they are often unfamiliar with software like Audacity that allows them to manipulate and edit recordings. On an even more basic level, I had students who were unaware that their computers had microphones capable of recording their speech even though they were long time Skype users. Hopefully this panel will allow for a productive exchange of ideas regarding the role of “sound,” broadly speaking, in humanities and the potential for digital technology to enhance that role.

Kinds of Sound
Archival Sounds
Music Videos
Found Sounds
Experimental Sounds
Field Recordings
Live Performance
Sound Effects

Smithsonian Global Sound
Judaica Sound Archives

Categories: General, Session Proposals |

About Kristie Schlauraff

I am currently an English PhD student at Cornell University working on a dissertation entitled “‘Trembling Immateriality’: Bodies and Voices in Nineteenth-Century American and British Popular Fiction." I focus on the fundamental role of the material/immaterial and visual/auditory dichotomies in debates about what it means to be human. Specifically, I address embodiment and the problematic status of voice as both corporeal and incorporeal, a concern that dominates twentieth-century discussions of sound technologies.