‘What can we learn of dangerous places by listening to their sounds?’
‘Sonic Journalism’ is the aural equivalent of photojournalism. It describes the practice where field recordings play a major role in the discussion and documentation of places, issues and events and where listening to sounds of all kinds strongly informs the approach to research and following narratives whilst on location.
Peter Cusack: Recent travels have brought me into contact with some difficult and potentially dangerous places. Most are areas of major environmental/ecological damage, but others are nuclear sites or the edges of military zones. The danger is not necessarily to a short-term visitor, but to the people of the area who have no option to leave or through the location’s role in geopolitical power structures. Dangerous places can be both sonically and visually compelling, even beautiful and atmospheric. There is, often, an extreme dichotomy between an aesthetic response and knowledge of the ‘danger’, whether it is pollution, social injustice, military or geopolitical.
Places visited include:
Chernobyl exclusion zone, Ukraine;
Caspian oil fields, Azerbaijan;
Tigris and Euphrates rivers valleys in South Eastern Turkey threatened by massive dam building projects;
North Wales, UK, where Chernobyl fallout still affects sheep farming practice; nuclear, military and greenhouse gas sites in the UK, including Sellafield, Dungeness, Bradwell, Sizewell, Thetford Forest, Rainham and Uttlesford
Hear some samples from Chernobyl HERE
All text and Images via Sounds From Dangerous Places
Film offers us a powerful tool to shift awareness and inspire action. It offers a method to break our dependence on the mainstream media and become the media ourselves. We don’t need to wait for anyone or anything.
Just imagine what could become possible if an entire city had seen just one of the documentaries above. Just imagine what would be possible if everyone in the country was aware of how unhealthy the mainstream media was for our future and started turning to independent sources in droves.
Creating a better world really does start with an informed citizenry, and there’s lots of subject matter to cover.
From all the documentaries above, it’s evident that our society needs a new story to belong to. The old story of empire and dominion over the earth has to be looked at in the full light of day – all of our ambient cultural stories and values that we take for granted and which remain invisible must become visible.
But most of all, we need to see the promise of the alternatives – we need to be able to imagine new exciting ways that people could live, better than anything that the old paradigm could ever dream of providing.
And all of this knowledge and introspection, dreaming, questioning, and discovery is essential for a cultural transformation that addresses root causes. This knowledge is vitally necessary. Taken together, this knowledge, which is documented throughout the 500+ documentaries on the Films For Action website, will lay the foundation on which the next paradigm will be built, post empire.
So take this library of films and use it. Host film screenings, share these films with friends, buy and give copies to your elected officials and school faculty. Get this information out in to your community and you will be laying the foundation for a local movement for mass societal, environmental and economic change.
All text and Image via Films for Action. See the films THERE
Nearly fifty years have passed since Richard Feynman taught the introductory physics course at Caltech that gave rise to these three volumes, The Feynman Lectures on Physics. In those fifty years our understanding of the physical world has changed greatly, but The Feynman Lectures on Physics has endured. Feynman’s lectures are as powerful today as when first published, thanks to Feynman’s unique physics insights and pedagogy. They have been studied worldwide by novices and mature physicists alike; they have been translated into at least a dozen languages with more than 1.5 millions copies printed in the English language alone. Perhaps no other set of physics books has had such wide impact, for so long.
Why Accessible Playgrounds?
Because kids in wheelchairs can’t play on playgrounds covered with wood chips. And children with muscular disabilities can fall out of swings that lack sides and backs. Or a child with vision or hearing problems can benefit from equipment specially designed for play alongside friends, siblings or any other child.
New federal requirements define playground accessibility as a civil right. And under those rules, playgrounds built or altered after March 14, 2012, are required to have wheelchair-friendly surfaces and equipment that helps kids with physical challenges move around.
You can Help HERE
“Totem and Taboo: Grindr remembers the Holocaust” is an online archive of Grindr pics of people using another architectural icon to meet people. Running since 2011, this incredible collection of amateur shots of the Holocaust Memorial in Berlin provides another insight into spatial appropriations for casual sex purposes. As they state on their website:
“In an age when ignorance is prevalent than ever, Grindr, the latest most addictive gay obsession, has wowed its members in relentlessly promoting the memory of the holocaust. While the gay community is being under scrutiny for promoting hedonism and alienation, this tribute seems all the more compelling. Totem and Taboo […] asks nothing more but to harness the vibrant blogosphere to Grindr users’ innovative manoeuvres to keep the memory alive, fresh and attractive.”
Impact: Earth! is a visual and user-friendly impact calculator, developed and hosted by Purdue University. The original Earth Impact Effects Program is still available to calculate the effects a given distance from an impact. It uses exactly the same algorithms to estimate the impact effects. You can also try out a version of the original program that is still under development to map the effects of an impact somewhere on Earth. Note this site requires the Google Earth plug-in and is still being tested.
“The future of” is a participatory book project initiated by Crap is good which tries to provide an insight into the future role of architecture. Realizing the problematic nature of the simple question ‘What is the future of Architecture?’ we feel it is still somehow relevant in describing the architectural practice of today.
Every architectural attempt starts by making a representation of an imaginative situation or design, which will happen, or could happen in the future. In many cases an architectural design remains a future plan, and in times of economical and political crisis, the question of what comes next, gains relevance. So, while architects shape the future, this book is concerning about the future of architecture.