Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Soundscape: Our Environment and the Tuning of the World” as Want to Read:
The Soundscape: Our Environment and the Tuning of the World
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Soundscape: Our Environment and the Tuning of the World

4.05  ·  Rating details ·  374 ratings  ·  15 reviews
The soundscape--a term coined by the author--is our sonic environment, the ever-present array of noises with which we all live. Beginning with the primordial sounds of nature, we have experienced an ever-increasing complexity of our sonic surroundings. As civilization develops, new noises rise up around us: from the creaking wheel, the clang of the blacksmith’s h ...more
Paperback, 320 pages
Published October 1st 1993 by Destiny Books
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Soundscape, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Soundscape

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Rating details
Sort: Default
Mar 16, 2012 rated it really liked it
This is mostly a pretty fun book with some sections that inspired a good deal of thought. There are some really interesting maps & data scattered throughout the book that's fun too...
His conservative, finger-wagging tone is kind of galling though. I keep saying the title of the book could have also been "The Way Things Ought to Sound". R. Murray is unhappy with the world as it sounds, and he wants qualified people to change it.

The takeaway is that people trained in acoustics & music shou
Aug 20, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: sound
At times I found myself laughing, frowning and completely disagreeing with the autor and in a matter of seconds, completely inspired.
I absolutely loved this book.
Edward Ferrari
Sep 07, 2013 rated it liked it
I knew it was bound to be a little a bit dated when I chose it (it was published in the 70's), but a lot of what must have been inspirational about it at the time remains that way. I found it frequently to be on the right side of poetic overstatement and despite the anti-noise argument frequently relying on rhetoric rather than reason I found it an enjoyable and informative read.
Albert Murillo
Jan 02, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Leido en la versión en castellano El Paisaje sonoro y la afinación del mundo que salió a través deIntermedio.
Un libro antiguo pero que habla del sonido desde una perspectiva única. Reconozco que el tema del paisaje sonoro me interesa mucho, pero creo que es un libro que puede interesar a todo el mundo.
May 20, 2008 rated it really liked it
I was assigned this book for a class. For a textbook it reads really well. I read it fron to back no problem bc it is filled with interesting ideas on sounds, memory, experience, emotions, psychology, etc.
Jun 10, 2012 rated it really liked it
The word “Soundscape” is a term coined by the composer and writer R. Murray Schafer which means our ever-present sonic environment. Through history this soundscape has continued to increase in complexity as the world of the post-industrial revolution continues to evolve.

As our awareness concerning the dangers of toxic waste and environmental pollution grows, there is however a lack of awareness concerning the ever-increasing pollution of our sonic environment. In his book “The Soundscape -the Tu
Karen Chung
Sep 15, 2014 rated it really liked it
The writing style of this book put me off a bit at first - it tends to ring pedantic now and then, though you get the feeling the author is fighting hard to not use too many of the obscure, technical words he knows and is comfortable with, including several that he himself has coined. But after a few chapters it didn't bother me much anymore. And the technologies referred to go only back to 1977, but this is not a major problem - the author's points remain largely valid in the present day as wel ...more
Dec 01, 2015 rated it liked it
This is an informative read for somenone interested in sound and its design. Getting through the initial chapters was a struggle. The later half of the book was more useful. It is full of information relating to the author's personal experiences and to studies carried out as part of the world soundscape project. These include numerous facts on various sounds and their significance. This book will definitely point out interested readers in the right direction for further exploration. It reinforce ...more
May 24, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Such an inspiring read! Every chapter brought wonderful insights, especially for a young designer finishing up graduate studies. He has done many studies and the fact that the information is much older really makes me want to go out and redo his studies just to see if anything has changed!
Jun 19, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This book is just amazing and I couldn't stop reading it. Finished some chapters and saw that it was the book I wanted to read about ancient music history, noise, techno/house and music explained by the rich vocabulary and historical facts from the pen of the writer.
Emanuele De libero
Feb 17, 2016 rated it really liked it
Seminal and fascinating introduction to the sound of the world around you. In a visually dominated experience of modern life, this compact and entertaining book will open up your ears and help you appreciate sounds you may have previously tuned out as noise. Revealing and inspiring for musicians.
Nov 22, 2015 rated it liked it
Pretty much dated and sloppy writing. However, as a Field Recording listener and person who work lots with sound, this book is really informative though I might not agree with R. Murray's argument on hi-fi and lo-fi.
Joe Huppert
Apr 30, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Philosophical seminal text on sound
Feb 22, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Wonderful. All sound specialists, writers and directors need to read this book.
Jul 01, 2007 rated it did not like it
Shelves: non-fiction
I was very curious to learn about the subject, but the writing was so atrocious I couldn't stand it any more.
Carl Linsdell
rated it it was amazing
Feb 07, 2016
rated it it was amazing
Jul 30, 2012
Sana rao
rated it liked it
Feb 13, 2013
John Ayers
rated it really liked it
Jan 16, 2015
rated it really liked it
Sep 06, 2014
rated it really liked it
Apr 03, 2009
rated it it was amazing
Nov 08, 2008
rated it it was amazing
Feb 27, 2010
rated it really liked it
Jan 31, 2016
rated it liked it
Feb 17, 2016
rated it it was amazing
Mar 03, 2016
rated it really liked it
Dec 05, 2018
rated it really liked it
May 15, 2012
rated it it was amazing
Jan 05, 2012
rated it really liked it
May 14, 2014
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Noise: The Political Economy of Music
  • Audio Culture: Readings in Modern Music
  • Haunted Weather: Music, Silence, and Memory
  • Noise/Music: A History
  • Noise, Water, Meat: A History of Sound in the Arts
  • The Art of Noise (futurist manifesto, 1913)
  • Arcana: Musicians on Music
  • Undercurrents: The Hidden Wiring of Modern Music
  • Genesis of a Music
  • Give My Regards to Eighth Street: Collected Writings
  • Silence: Lectures and Writings
  • Audio-Vision: Sound on Screen
  • Improvisation: Its Nature And Practice In Music
  • Modulations: A History of Electronic Music: Throbbing Words on Sound
  • On the Sensations of Tone
  • Handmade Electronic Music: The Art of Hardware Hacking [With CD]
  • Experimental Music: Cage and Beyond
  • Formalized Music: Thought and Mathematics in Composition (Harmonologia Series, #6)
“Today all sounds belong to a continuous field of possibilities lying within the comprehensive dominion of music. Behold the new orchestra: the sonic universe! And the musicians: anyone and anything that sounds!” 2 likes
“The gorilla is the only primate to have discovered a nonvocal sound mechanism: it drums on its chest with its fist, producing a loud, hollow sound. This is done both when making vocal sounds and on its own. The gorilla has discovered the property of resonance, independent of the natural mechanism of the voice box. It seems forever on the verge of discovering the musical instrument without being able to make the transition from personal to artificial sound. So far as we know only man has done this.” 0 likes
More quotes…