Audiobooks, Literature, and Sound Studies by Matthew Rubery

By Matthew Rubery

This is the 1st scholarly paintings to envision the cultural importance of the "talking booklet" because the invention of the phonograph in 1877, the earliest desktop to permit the replica of the human voice. contemporary advances in sound know-how make this an opportune second to mirror at the evolution of our analyzing practices due to the fact that this outstanding invention. a few questions addressed by means of the gathering comprise: How does auditory literature adapt published texts? What abilities in shut listening are precious for its reception?

What are the social results of latest listening applied sciences? In sum, the essays accumulated jointly by way of this assortment discover the level to which the audiobook allows us not only to listen to literature yet to listen to it in new methods. Bringing jointly a suite of reflections at the enrichments and impoverishments of the analyzing event caused via advancements in sound expertise, this assortment spans the earliest variations of revealed texts into sound through Charles Dickens, Thomas Hardy, and different novelists from the past due 19th century to recordings via modern figures equivalent to Toni Morrison and Barack Obama on the flip of the twenty-first century. because the voices accumulated the following recommend, it's time to provide a listening to to 1 of the main said new media of the previous century.

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David Foster Wallace, Consider the Lobster and Other Essays (Selected Essays), abridged ed. (Hachette Audio, 2005). Other illustrations can be found in Andrew Adam Newman, “How Should a Book Sound? ” New York Times, January 20, 2006, 33. 46. Birkerts, “Close Listening,” 150. ” As he forecast: “A book of 40,000 words upon a single metal plate ten inches square . . becomes a strong probability. The advantages of such books over those printed are too readily seen to need mention. Such books would be listened to where now none are read.

Thomas A. Edison, “The Phonograph and Its Future,” North American Review 126 (1878): 534; and “The Perfected Phonograph,” North American Review 146 (1888): 646. 12. “The Talking Book,” New York Times, March 13, 1934, 20. 13. com/. 14. Quoted in Walter L. Welch and Leah Brodbeck Stenzel Burt, From Tinfoil to Stereo: The Acoustic Years of the Recording Industry, 1877–1929, rev. ed. (Gainesville: University Press of Florida, 1994), 14. 15. John M. Picker, Victorian Soundscapes (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2003), 114.

The only previous studies of the audiobook format are Sarah Kozloff, “Audio Books in a Visual Culture,” Journal of American Culture 18, no. ” Journal of Popular Culture 34, no. 4 (2001): 171–181; Jason Camlot, “Early Talking Books: Spoken Recordings and Recitation Anthologies, 1880–1920,” Book History 6 (2003): 147–173; Deborah Philips, “Talking Books: The Encounter of Literature and Technology in the Audio Book,” Convergence: The International Journal of Research into New Media Technologies 13, no.

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