Marcel Cobussen

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Page Range

pp. 38–57

3 The Familiarity of Everyday Sounds

Chapter of: Engaging with Everyday Sounds(pp. 38–57)
In this chapter, sonic environments are described as characteristic traits of a place, which are perceived but not noticed, to the listener’s pleasure or annoyance. Under the topic of ‘annoyance’, misophonia and ‘the Hum’ are discussed, while under ‘pleasure’, Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response (ASMR) comes into play.
Everyday sounds are described as comparable to music, rather than inferior to it. There is a discussion of “disciplining sounds”, where sounds guide, control, and manipulate us. The use of sound in this way shows us the extent to which we do actually monitor what is going on around us aurally, even without consciously paying attention.
Finally, the chapter covers windows and doors, and the way in which they carry out sound management, preventing unwanted sounds from entering the house as best they can. As a result, windows and doors are argued to have a social, political, and ethical role which is closely connected to the sonic ambiance.