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Germany in the Loud Twentieth CenturyAn Introduction$
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Florence Feiereisen and Alexandra Merley Hill

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780199759392

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199759392.001.0001

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The Sonic Mindedness of the Great War

The Sonic Mindedness of the Great War

Viewing History through Auditory Lenses

Chapter:
(p.51) Chapter 3 The Sonic Mindedness of the Great War
Source:
Germany in the Loud Twentieth Century
Author(s):

Yaron Jean

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199759392.003.0003

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

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