Antinoise is a technical term for various noise-canceling technologies and a label applied to human antinoise campaigners. But antinoise connects rather than divides human and machines; antinoise techniques are completed in the ear, while human-initiated antinoise actions and classifications require and enroll sonic technology of various kinds. Modes of hearing are thus embodied and exteriorized in new ways, and the automated ear and the supplemented machine may figure, not necessarily on opposite sides, in sonically articulated struggles for space. This article explores a series of sonic regimes, articulated across bodies and machines in variously historically freighted micro-locations, asking how a particular order of sound might order or enclose spaces. Under consideration are antinoise campaigners on trains, Mosquito sonic management devices, and a glossolaliac artwork (smSage) that might open a utopian space of sonic solidarity. The attempt, following Attali, to understand a new political economy of noise through a consideration of what might constitute various forms of common space is made, first, in order to investigate and expose the contemporary significance to politics of questions of what stands before meaning—this is a politics of noise and speech, rather than one focusing on speech and language. Second, the article keys in to a certain reorganization of the senses emerging in contemporary, pervasively mediated ecology—seeking to outline what might be termed a reprioritization of the sonic.
Caroline Bassett; Twittering Machines: Antinoise and Other Tricks of the Ear. differences 1 December 2011; 22 (2-3): 276–299. doi: https://doi.org/10.1215/10407391-1428924
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