Chapter

The Sonic Mindedness of the Great War

Yaron Jean

in Germany in the Loud Twentieth Century

Published in print November 2011 | ISBN: 9780199759392
Published online January 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199918911 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199759392.003.0003
The Sonic Mindedness of the Great War

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This chapter explores the sonic experience of the First World War from the perspective of soldiers on the ground, in the sea, and in the air. World War I, with its extensive employment of modern warfare technology, created a new sonic experience that was closely linked with the universal human need to survive. Soldiers developed the ability to translate their individual sonic experiences in the battlefield into a collective bipolar distinction between “sounds of safety” and “sounds of danger” and act upon this distinction, called “wartime sonic mindedness.” This sonic mindedness continued long after the First World War, when many heard the hectic sonic “battlefields” of the post-war era through the auditory lenses of war.

Keywords: World War I; sound; battlefield; safety; danger; modern warfare; ground war; sea war; air war; sonic mindedness

Chapter.  6412 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Musicology and Music History

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