‘You have got such a beautiful symphony in front of you!’ Use and resistance to mobile music devices among adventurers

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Since Michael Bull's seminal work on the Walkman, media scholars have observed how sound and technology enact certain interactional frameworks in urban contexts. We know little about the materiality of listening in non-urban space. This article contributes to these conversations by examining how adventurers (climbers, bushwalkers) adopt or resist mobile music devices when they are in the bush or mountains. I show how device use is moralised in this context, wrapped up in broader conversations about what it means to be a bushwalker or climber, particularly with respect to its impacts on connection to place and the embodied experience of being there. The analysis shows three modes of mobile music device use or non-use: 1) resisting devices to fully connect with the immediate environment; 2) attending to both the sounds of place with selective engagement with music as an additional layer of experience; and 3) device use as a strategy to disconnect mind from body at times of difficulty or boredom.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-10
Number of pages10
JournalPoetics
Volume92
Early online date2021
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2022

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