Blog Post #5 – Hearing / Listening / Soundscape


  1. Hearing is passive, involuntary, and requires no effort. It is a physiological perception of sound that does not require centered attention. Listening is a voluntary and conscious process that allows us to react to and understand the sounds and conversations we hear. Anything interesting that we hear immediately captures our attention and sparks curiosity. Say we are having a one-on-one conversation with a certain someone significant to us, we effortlessly focus intently on what the person has to say, maintain excellent eye contact, and give them thoughtful and considerate opinions. It’s a personal choice to be selective on what we listen to. Many factors come into consideration – family values, cultural diversity, social connections and influences, political opinions, etc. Anything that we were raised to believe in and our social environment can influence our listening skills. Our willingness to listen can also increase our perception skills and allows us to gain more wisdom.
  2. “The sense of hearing cannot be closed off at will. There are no earlids. When we go to sleep, our perception of sound is the last door to close, and it is also the first to open when we awaken.” Schafer quotes. This is especially true because our first reaction to any sound is through our sense of hearing before using our sense of seeing. Schafer states that sound comes from the daily hustle and bustle of life. Living in a city such as New York definitely impacts our everyday perception -sounds of cars and trains, heavy machinery, street music, loud chattering, birds chirping, etc.¬† The world has become so loud that we have to filter the noises and be able to distinguish if it’s something pleasant to listen to or if it’s just mere noise pollution. Both Schafer and Krukowski have written about sounds and how it plays a huge role in our daily lives. Human¬†interactions are becoming increasingly inaccessible due to technology according to Krukowski. The human population has succumbed to relying on increasing technological developments. Is this a blessing or a curse? or both? We cannot deny that these two writers have valid points on how sound is essential for sharing information, interacting with others and countless other aspects of life.