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Noise: a Human History of Sound and Listening

3.65  ·  Rating details ·  263 ratings  ·  44 reviews
Based on a major BBC Radio 4 series, David Hendy explores the role of sound - and of listening - in 100,000 years of human history. In prehistoric caves, drummers used natural acoustics to recreate natural sound. In classical Europe, orators turned the human voice into a lyrical instrument. In Buddhist temples, the icons' ears were exaggerated to represent their spiritual ...more
Hardcover, 382 pages
Published March 14th 2013 by Profile Books (first published January 1st 2013)
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Heba
Mar 15, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
كتاب ممتع يصطحبك فى رحلة التاريخ الانساني للصوت والاصغاء ، بدءا من تردد صوت الطبول واصداءها بالكهوف الحجرية بالعصر الحديث ومن ثم انتقل الى صخب روما الذي لا ينقطع على مدار اليوم ومن ثم ضجيج الحروب حيث أجراس المستعمرين التحذيرية وطلقات البنادق ووابلها الذي يحيل الحروب لجحيم مستعر، واخيرا ضجيج الثورة الصناعية...
بعد ذلك عرض التدابير اللازمة لعزل المرء عن ضجيج العالم .
عد الكاتب الصوت على انه شعور متقلب يتملكك وتظن انك تملكه ، كما أنه يرى ان المشهد الصوتي يفوق عالم القراءة والكتابة فى قدرته على التواص
...more
ايمان
Jul 31, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
كتاب جميل.
hayatem
Apr 30, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: أخرى
" لم يكن القرنا السادس عشر والسابع عشر صامتين. وبحلول القرن الثامن عشر تشكلت عوالم جديدة من الصوت كما يبدو، ليس بين أجزاء مختلفة من العالم في المقام الأول، ولكن الأهم بين أولئك الذين يملكون القوة والذين لا يملكونها . ووجد العالم نفسه يقف على حافةٍ العصر الحديث، ويواجهه احتمال صراعات لا تنتهي من أجل التفوق بين هاتين الجماعتين المتعرضتين في جميع مظاهرها ، من الجنس والطبقة والعرق. وعلى الرغم من أن بعض هذه الصراعات ستحل سلمياً أو ببساطة سوف تتبدد، فإن بعضها الآخر سينفجر في ثورة واسعة النطاق وقمع عني ...more
Hameed Younis
Feb 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
لم استمتع منذ زمن بعيد واستفيد بمثل هذا القدر العظيم، كتاب تاريخي انثروبولوجي معلوماتوي مهم، والأهم من كلّ ما سبق أنه أجاب سؤال طالما راودني حول "الحل الذي يجب اتخاذه للحدّ من هذا الضجيج المتنامي في العالم والذي طالما هربت وامتعضت منه، بعدما صمّ أذني وأردى عظامي ولوّث حياتي منذ 2003 وحتى الآن
قد يكون الكتاب مسهب قليلاً، وفيه من الفصول التي لم أجد منها جدوى وفائدة، لكن المحصلة والمعلومات والمصادر الزاخرة فيه اتخمتني وامتعتني كثيراً
Huda AlAbri
بعيدا عن موضة التغني بالصمت في زمن الجعجعة ،هذا كتاب يعيد للصوت - بكافة أشكاله- اعتباره، ويبين دوره الريادي كمؤثر فعال على مستوى الفرد و الجماعة،عبر دراسة تاريخية.
Edward Ferrari
Sep 07, 2013 rated it liked it
Though overall it offered an engaging general history of the subject I found it to be a little thin on the ground in places. It felt - essentially - like a journalist's gloss on what is quite a complex and philosophical subject. I bought it because of the price tag and found it to be a modestly good, if not a particularly inspirational, introduction to the subject. The references and notes were helpful.
نورة  العجمي
أحد طرق مقاومة الضجيج هو قراءة مثل هذا الكتاب
فكرته الأساسية كانت سلسلة من حلقات أذاعية على البي بي سي وتم تحويل البرنامج إلى مقروء .
راضي النماصي
شامل وممتع، وبترجمة ممتازة.
توصية.
John Park
A kind of social history of sound.

Two and a half stars.

I found the early insights the most interesting—the fact that cave paintings are found at the most sonically interesting places in the caves—where echoes combine and seem to hint at another level of existence.

The subsequent chapters, dealing with such topics as the industrial and other revolutions as sources and users of sound, often seemed to be making a bit too much of relatively obvious material.

I was perhaps put off by the fact that Hend
...more
مرتضى العطيه
الضجيج هو سلاح الإنسان المسحوق والمقموع

الصوت هو رمز الوجود الفردي

يقول محمود درويش:

أنا من هنا
وهنا أنا
دوّى أبي أنا من هنا
وأنا هنا , وأنا أنا
وهُنا هُنا , إني أنا
و أنا أنا , وهنا أنا
و أنا هنا , إني هنا
و أنا أنا , ودَنا الصدى
كسرَ المدى
قامت قيامتهُ صدىً
وجَد الصّدى
دوّى الصدى
أبداً هنا..هنا أبداً
وغدا الزمانُ غدا
بدا شكلُ الصدى بلداً هنا
ورَدَ الصدى، فاكسرْ جدارَ الكونِ يا أبتي
صدىً حولَ الصدى
(ولـتـنـفـجـرْ)
أنا منْ هنا
وهنا أنا , وأنا أنا
وهنا أنا , وأنا أنا
AbdulMawla Mohammed
‏4/5 🇬🇧

"كانت الأصوات التي قمنا بها نحن البشر عبر التاريخ -الأصوات المزعجة والمثيرة للقلق وكذلك الممتعة- مليئة بالمعاني دائماً. أعطت أسلافنا -وما زالت تعطينا- إحساساً بالزمان والمكان، والخطر والراحة وشعوراً بالتواصل مع الآخرين، وجعلت منّا بشراً."

كيف سيكون شكل البشرية لو كانت صامتة؟
يحكي هذا الكتاب عن الصوت، وكيف تأثر الإنسان بالصوت، وكيف أثر الصوت على تاريخ الإنسان من إنسان الكهف إلى الإنسان المعاصر.

هنا يظهر الصوت باعتباره أداة بيد السلطة تخيف به الشعب، وأداة للشعب حتى يثور، ويعبر، ويمتعض، ويبته
...more
لين الوعري Leen Al Warie
ما الذي يَلزم لخيال كاتبٍ أو شاعرٍ أكثر من كتابٍ عن تاريخ الصوت!
.
بدأت قراءة هذا الكتاب قبل ثلاث سنوات، وكنت حينها بحاجةٍ ماسة لبناء قاعدة معلومات تساعد في رفد فكرة بدأت تتشكل في رأسي ولم تجد مُدخلها على الورق بعد. أسرني تتبع الباحث للصوت والموسيقى بدءًا من القبائل القديمة، وساكني البراري والكهوف، وطقوس العبادة لديهم، والتواصل، انتقالاً إلى نشأة المدينة الدولة في اليونان، ثم طبيعة بناء المعابد والكنائس مابعد الميلاد وكيفية بسط السلطة والنفوذ واستعراض القوة الإلهية عبر الصوت!
.
الصوت الذي كان مصدر
...more
Peter Geyer
Noise interests me a lot, because I'm unduly sensitive to it, even noises I make, other than the music I listen to. There's a bit of paradox in that in that I don't like people shouting, for instance, but I've done some of that myself, and if the doof-doof emanating from a passing car causes annoyance, then I need to recall that when I was in my 20s I made a bit of noise myself, as a passing motorist with audio cassettes of my own choosing. And you can also make noise to block out the unacceptab ...more
Clark Hays
May 31, 2015 rated it liked it
The history of noise, the anthropology of ghosts and other illusive things

Writing about the history of noise is like mapping the afterlife or studying the anthropology of ghosts, entirely speculative and seeking to impose a sense of order on the random, and a sense of the physical on the purely ethereal. It is also entirely dependent upon how one chooses to define noise. To me, noise seems unintentional, a byproduct; the author uses a much broader definition that includes intentional noise-makin
...more
Johanna
Mar 06, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I've wanted to read something about history of sound for a while and this is a nice introduction and overview. It doesn't pretend to be anything that it isn't - which is super in depth, boundaries breaking research. I learned a lot of interesting tidbits and I liked the style. 4 stars!
Jane Walker
May 24, 2013 rated it really liked it
Noise or sound, and what's the difference? Hendy isn't very clear on this, but the book contains some interesting insights into the soundscape of various eras.
carelessdestiny
May 25, 2016 rated it did not like it
Shelves: musings
This was a tedious read. It goes in a straight line from prehistoric caves to 20th century cities, a peculiar way to look at history.
Tom
Aug 15, 2014 rated it it was ok
I bought this after hearing the BBC program which for some reason was much better. Although fairly well written, there is simply not enough meat on the bone. I was hoping for a rollicking good read.
Fatima Abbas
Mar 29, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
B. Rule
This was a thoroughgoing mediocrity of a book. The topic is intriguing and there are some good factoids scattered throughout. I enjoyed the discussions of prehistoric caves and how the artwork is often found in the most acoustically rich chambers. Also good was the account of tricks employed by medieval church-builders to convey majesty through sound. However, a lot of the insights tend towards the pedestrian, especially as Hendy nears the modern era. He spills a lot of ink reiterating that soun ...more
Jeff Szymanski
Mar 26, 2019 rated it liked it
Overall, it was an okay book. I felt like some of the stories told were regurgitated from other recent works on the same subject. (But the author also cites and credits these works, so he knew.) Also, if it’s possible for a book to be over-edited, this might be a candidate. I would have preferred more depth for a lot chapters. Instead, it felt like the author got bored and moved on too quickly, which I’m sure wasn’t the case. The book tries to cover a lot of history, so I’m sure it was edited do ...more
Andrew Earnshaw
Excellent book, a very different way about thinking about human history and takes you through the whole of human history (almost...) via the medium of sound.

The only issue is that this a "Western History of Sound & Listening", not a 'human history', it is very euro-centric, save for the occasional comment about African drums and Ghanaian music and, even then, only ever through the ears of westerners. That is fine, actually, the book works because of the narrative thread running throughout this,
...more
Janet Eshenroder
Oct 04, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I started off enthusiastic, thinking my “I only read scientific non-fiction” husband would also find the book intriguing. I kept waiting, since several reviews had claimed the book fell apart and dragged after the first section. Nope. I found it a fascinating way to look at history and at the way we use and abuse noise. Lots to think about, when silence becomes too much and I need to turn on a radio, or when noise in the neighborhood becomes an irritation. The class and power structure impact on ...more
Luciana Vichino
Jun 08, 2019 rated it liked it
This is an engaging book about the history of sound and how the soundscape has evolved from prehistory to the current days. From the sounds that represented a communication with the Gods to the ones representing the technical and scientific evolution of our society it shared the history of how the soundscape has influenced ways of living and relationships between people. culture and nature. That last piece could have been more explored though. Each chapter can be ready independently and they bri ...more
Nick
Sep 24, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
If you are compiling a shelf of books on sound and how humans perceive sound, this book should be included. I feel the subject is too broad for coverage by a single volume. Hendy bills this as a social history of noise, and in that he succeeds, addressing various angles in religion, caves, buildings, urban and domestic life, and war. If you are looking for a one-stop explanation of music theory or a poor person's explanation of the scientific basis of acoustics, keep reading.
Mark
Oct 22, 2017 rated it liked it
Enjoying dipping into this, the book of the radio series.Fascinating content around the sociology and history of sound.The best chapter so far is the one on bells, led me to finding a new word for a piece of wood struck like a bell, a 'semantron' played here in St.Catherine's Monastery,Sinai. https://youtu.be/zS4ZOQAnpzI . These replaced metal bells in countries where their sound was banned. Listen to the original series here : https://www.prx.org/series/33248-nois... ...more
Mark
May 06, 2017 rated it it was ok
Not just about noise, but about the whole vague field of sound and human hearing. Social history with a thin premise that begins with too many what-ifs and suppositions. There's just too little evidence on the subject before the age of recording to support most of the early chapters. Also some annoying errors of fact; attributing Trajan's Column to Marcus Aurelius is a bizarre mistake for someone who seemed like he couldn't wait to talk about Roman history. Overall meh.
Moosa Albalushi
كتاب كتب بالأصوات.. كل سطر له نغمة..هذا الكتاب يستحق ان يحول موسيقيا وان يسجل صوتيا كبودكاست... الكتاب يحاول إعادة مكانة الصوت في حياتنا بطريقة فلسفية جميلة.. يقرأ بنفس طويل لطول عباراته ولأنه تاريخ للصوت اختصره الكاتب في سلسلة من الأقسام والتي بدت عناوينها وكأنها فصول رواية
Mellamiya
Apr 24, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Sesin insanlığın başlangıç tarihinden günümüze kadar değişik alanlardaki varlığını anlatıyor.

Ancak özel bir ilgi varsa, okunabilecek bir kitap. İçinde şiirsellik tadında bazı kelimelerin ve cümlelerin de bulunması, okumamı şevklendirdi.
ibrahim elsadony
Oct 09, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
عظيم فعلا
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Professor of Media and Communications, School of Media, Film and Music, University of Sussex

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