Ideologies and ethics in the uses and abuses of sound

Koli, Finland
June 16-19, 2010
Call for papers (reminder): abstracts by October 12


The 2010 WFAE conference will be held at Koli in Eastern Finland. Koli is a plausible site for reflecting upon ideologies, ethics and soundscapes, since it was amongst the key places of the national romantic artist pilgrims in the late 19th century Finland. The main organisers, Department of Finnish Language and Cultural Research at the University of Joensuu, Finland and The Finnish Society for Acoustic Ecology (FSAE) invite researchers and artists from all disciplines to join this forum of discussion.

Confirmed invited and keynote speakers are (in alphabetical order):
Steven Feld
Charles Hirschkind
Bruce Johnson
Anahid Kassabian
Andra McCartney
R. Murray Schafer
Barry Truax
Hildegard Westerkamp

More information at:

Proposals are invited for papers, workshops, roundtable, or artistic contributions relating to, but not limited to the following topics:

Nations, nationalism and soundscape
There has been an abundance of research on the topic of nationalism and music. What about nationalism and soundscape? Within sound of religious movements Martin Stokes mentioned recently that in order to understand certain Islamic movements today it would be crucial to understand their soundscapes. Collective listening or giving ?voices? to subjects and their religious experiences, are some examples.

Constructing past and progress in the uses and abuses of sound
Both past and progress can be used and abused as part of many ideologies. Have past soundscapes been used as a resource as part of these negotiations? The ideology of progress, then, is intimately related to the acceptance of noise as an inevitable phenomenon.

Ethical challenges of working with the sounds
How do soundscape researchers and artists answer to the ethical challenges of working with the sounds of other people ? and of themselves. How do we understand cultural convergences, differences and sameness? Or would it just be more important to learn to tolerate the other? Should the researcher or artist make an intervention — or would it be best just to observe the uses and abuses of sounds from outside?

The commodification of aural space, sound and silence
How does silence, its commodification and tourism fit under the same sky? What kind of strategies can the citizens and planners develop in different localities in order to guarantee the soundscape comfort, tourism as a means of livelihood and the touristic search of silence all at the same time? What about the urban environment with its ubiquitous transphonic phenomena? Who has the right to fill the urban space with music, and how is it currently happening?

Please send abstracts (max. 400 words) by October 12, 2009 to the conference e-mail address The abstracts are being dealt with in early November, and the people whose papers and sonic art works are chosen to be presented will be notified on November 10.

Leave a Reply