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Sound, Listening and Place: The aesthetic dilemma

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  11 January 2012

Barry Truax*
School of Communication, Simon Fraser University, Burnaby, BC, V5A 1S6, Canada


A purely aesthetic approach may be problematic when artists wish to deal with the external world as part of their work. The work of R. Murray Schafer in formulating soundscape studies is described, as well as the author's extension of that work within a communicational framework. Soundscape composition is situated within a continuum of possibilities, each with its own practice of mapping or representing the world. Current technological possibilities as well as ethical issues involved in the production process are discussed, along with the author's work in creating a multi-channel imaginary soundscape. The evolving nature of the listener's relationship to acoustic space over the last century is discussed in comparison to developments in soundscape composition.

Copyright © Cambridge University Press 2012

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