The complex archive of soundscapes can configure a critical cartography that questions and exceeds the authorised and accepted vision of history, politics, and culture. At the same time, sound introduces a semantic challenge for those elements involved in the associative network that is created by a practice of listening.
By critically crossing the diverse cultures that result from the varied sounds and histories of sound in a European context, it’s possible to create the conditions within which to make other positions perceptible – not by adhering to every utopian notion of connectivity and borderlessness, but by highlighting the dyssymmetries and tensions produced by the listening process. Such a practice can lead us to think and feel, to continue to learn, to produce agonistic tensions that challenge the authorised knowledge. Overcoming a pure musical approach, a broader culture of sound is one which would empower cross-cultural relation – enhancing encounters and forms of cultural translation; configuring a practice of border crossing; re-routing the discourse on gender, race and difference; and making new sense of concepts such as “identity” and “community”.
This article focuses on the SoCCoS European Sound Art network that is a project based on the idea that distinct cultures of sound art and experimental music can be brought into dialogue with one another in a process aimed at reveal[ing] the culture of Sound (The Sound of Culture: A European Sound Art Residency Network).
“In this framework, sound – as a matter necessarily linked with both affect and the public sphere – invites us to deal with new forms of connectedness and multiculturalism. Especially at a time when the notion of Europe is “under fire, both as a result of resurgent nationalism and euro-scepticism that challenge the ideal of supra-nationality and cooperation and as a result of its contested border politics” (Ponzanesi and Leurs, 2014: 4), such an invitation is vital. Whether we think of Europe as a historical, political, geographical, or emotional concept, there is an urgency now to scrutinize and to re-configure its notion, to listen to the “ruins” that it has produced through the creation of unequal categories and regimes of human rights, citizenship, and hospitality.” (p. 202)
book edited by Luis Costa and Julia Eckhardt
English, ISBN 9789899720596