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Hypercinema: Sound Assignment Week 1

This week we watched two videos for class to help us think critically about telling a story through our sound assignment.

The first video was this TED talk by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie about the dangers of a consuming a single story or a story from a singular point of view that frames our perception of the world and of other people.

Eurocentrism is a huge issue in the west, along with "otherism". I was raised under these concepts and it's hard to get away from it throughout our education system and through the way in which we consume our media. History is only as accurate as the person who tell it, and that's something I always try to remember when watching the news and ready books about history or other stories. But then again, it's still only coming from one point of view.

I really enjoyed her talk, she's genuine and honest and I think her anecdotes were very relatable and understandable to any audience - which is what makes the concept of her story that much more impactful.

I've been struggling with "doomscrolling" on the news and have noticed that it's starting to inform and shape my perception bias of the community around me. It's something I've taken note of and am working on being objective, but it's a scary how easy it can be to get roped into the negative perceptions formed from the way stories are told in the news - and how singular it really is.

I have always struggled telling my own stories. First of all, I have a hard time remembering them. But even if I did, I find that my stories were never as interesting as those of others and I'd much rather hear from them, then speak myself. But this class will hopefully push me out of my comfort zone to tell stories that are genuine, stories that are mine - but not singularly mine. No story is singularly mine anyway.

The second video was this TED talk by Pauline Olivaros and is about the difference between hearing and listening. I absolutely loved this talk and this was such a great projects.

It's funny because I sometimes listen to dark noise soundscapes instead of music when I need to focus, and it really is amazing to listen to. I love the low hum of air echoing off walls and it helps reminds me of just how loud the earth really is, seeing as I spend most of my day trying to tune it out.

I appreciate the way she described the physical and psychological different between listening and hearing and she really drives home how vastly different people interpret sound, and that our perception of the world shapes how we listen.

I also took note of how her experience in the cistern shaped her appreciation and attention to other performance spaces as literal medium with which to transfer sound that is just as important as the sound being created in the space. I will try to expand my listening to include more, as she has suggested. I noticed that listening to the monitor on the mic while walking around in Manhattan recording audio has definitely expanded my sound perception once the headphones came off.

Well, that's all for this week. I'll leave you with this Cave Water Noises Generator for some customizable and relaxing soundscapes.


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