This is the blog for “Anthropology of Sound,” an undergraduate seminar held at UC Davis during Spring 2017.

From reflecting on the ethics of listening to religious cassettes in Egypt to listening with oceanographers as they use sound to know and to navigate, anthropologists are increasingly doing ethnography with their ears. This new research represents a conscious democratization of the senses. This course provides a survey of the anthropology of sound while reflecting on and imagining the future of sound ethnography. This class examines how sound—and music—are perceived, produced, disciplined, and silenced across cultures.

In doing so, we will read ethnography, philosophy and sound studies to understand how sound relates to perception, space, politics, and culture. In addition to reading, we will have in-class listening examples and will experiment with ways of incorporating sound in our research.