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Bard College to Host Two-Day Symposium Exploring the Place of Sound in the Arts, Sciences, and Humanities

Darren O'Sullivan
ANNANDALE-ON-HUDSON, N.Y.–– Recent years have witnessed a sonic turn in the humanities and beyond. Many working in the fields of anthropology, literature, urban studies, history, media studies, and the arts have increasingly shifted their attention to sound as an expressive medium, a material, and a critical object of inquiry. From April 7–8, the Bard College Experimental Humanities Program and its Sound Cluster at Bard College will gather scholars and practitioners to consider the potential of thinking about and through sound. The two-day symposium, Sound in Theory, Sound in Practice, will focus on questions of aurality, transmission, aesthetics, and evidence. The event takes place in the Laszlo Z. Bito ’60 Conservatory. It is free and open to the public, but pre-registration is required. For more information or to register, call 845-758-7215, e-mail, or visit
Bard President Leon Botstein will introduce the symposium, which includes keynote presentations by Emily Thompson, author of The Soundscape of Modernity, and Jonathan Sterne, author of The Audible Past and editor of The Sound Studies Reader; an exhibition of sound art by Bard faculty, students, and invited sound artists; and experiential workshops taking the form of sonic “interludes” between panel discussions. The symposium will close on Friday, April 8, with a Deep Listening Workshop with pioneering composer Pauline Oliveros, followed by a performance hosted by The John Cage Trust.
The Bard College Experimental Humanities Sound Cluster is made up of an interdisciplinary group of faculty who all have scholarly, teaching, and/or artistic interests in sound and its relation to acoustic technologies.  The cluster meets monthly to discuss articles and its work together, and hope to pursue some collaborative projects or courses as the cluster develops. The faculty who participate are from anthropology, art history, ethnomusicology, history, literature, music, and physics. For more information, please visit

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This event was last updated on 04-04-2016