This course will focus on the written literary text in relation to recent work in “sound studies”—examinations of the individual and cultural effects of new sound technologies. We will focus in particular on the gramophone and the radio, studying their histories and thinking about their implications for 20th-century literature and culture. Media history and theory readings will not only give us insight into the historical significance of these technologies, but will help us think about literature itself as a kind of medium (sonic and otherwise), in conversation with all the other ones. This will involve some work with UCSB’s Cylinder Preservation and Digitization Project.
UC Santa Barbara