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VoicetracksAttuning to Voice in Media and the Arts$
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Norie Neumark

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780262036139

Published to MIT Press Scholarship Online: January 2018

DOI: 10.7551/mitpress/9780262036139.001.0001

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Technology and Machines Speak (for) Themselves

Technology and Machines Speak (for) Themselves

(p.91) 4 Technology and Machines Speak (for) Themselves

Norie Neumark

The MIT Press

In this chapter the author attends to things as they voice themselves, focusing on mechanical and technological voices speaking (for) themselves—rather than mediating or carrying voices of others. She listens to insistent thingly voices, by attending to technology that itself speaks, speaks itself, voicing its own curious essence as it brings its own voice forcibly into the conversation. This includes loudspeakers and microphones that no longer humbly and quietly enable or transmit other voices, but voice themselves at the same time. The chapter also engages with works of sonification, a curious case of ‘as if’ a thing or force of nature is speaking but, the author proposes, is more about the voice of technology. The examples—including machines, from robots to toys to tattoo machines—attend to what they have to say about politics and economics as they speak of and for themselves.

Keywords:   things, thingly, voice, technology, sonification, machines, politics, mechanical, loudspeakers, microphones

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