Finnish Society for Acoustic Ecology
The Society’s mission is to raise public interest in the common environment of all vocal phenomena and raise awareness of the sound environment and it’s cultural meanings. These include not only pleasant and unpleasant experiences also culturally and historically significant voice phenomena and contexts, and above all, sounds and sound environments unique in nature, in the countryside and in the cities.
The International Conference of the World Forum for Acoustic Ecology took place in Koli, Finland June 16-19, 2010 themed “Ideologies and Ethics in the Uses and Abuses of Sound”.
The Finnish Society for Acoustic Ecology has published several volumes such as Acoustic Environments in Change & Five Village Soundscapes (2009) including 4 CD’s.
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ACOUSTIC ENVIRONMENTS IN CHANGE
How are the soundscapes of European villages doing? Can you still hear the factory hooters in the Swedish Skruv? What about the echo and children’s voices in the old part and the new residential areas in the Italian Cembra?
The writers are interested in both the disruption of sonic order, and the listening experiences of the members of the communities who wish to preserve order and equilibrium. How willing are the villagers to open up to the outside world and tourists, their new potential ‘patrons’ ? What about the process of becoming more aware of the noise and silence in their own lived environment? The writers also delve into the dynamics of social memory, nostalgia and soundscape, and the relationship between human and non-human materialities in these villages.
The first part of this publication with its twelve articles takes you to six European places, five of which were visited by the World Soundscape Project in the mid-1970s. The starting point in both studies has been to research acoustically and culturally diverse sonic environments. In this new study methods of anthropology and cultural studies have been deployed to supplement the methodology of soundscape research. The study strives towards making us aware of local interpretations about soundscape.
FIVE VILLAGE SOUNDSCAPES
This re-publication of the World Soundscape Project’s seminal Five Village Soundscapes study not only brings this landmark case study back into print, but, perhaps for the first time, allows a longitudinal comparison over 25 years of community soundscapes in transition. The result of the original study, apart from its detailed documentation of the soundscapes of five contrasting villages, was a model of the “acoustic community” characterized by their variety, complexity and balanced state, yet vulnerable to social and economic change in the form of noise. This model serves as a reference point for contemporary communities by showing the highly varied ways in which sound can play a positive and cohesive force at a social level, while subject to inevitable change. The studies are complemented by extensive audio examples on the accompanying CDs.
Another rich collection of soundscapes is “One Hundred Finnish Soundscapes” compiled for publication in 2006.
Soundscape Stories from Finland is a CD containing recordings from Finnish sonic environments. The CD comes with a booklet which has a description of each track in English. These recordings are a selection from the archives of the project “One Hundred Finnish Soundscapes” in which written descriptions of meaningful sound environments were collected and then recorded together with an interview with the proposer.
The Tracklisting reads very Finnish already: 1. Elk hunting in Suomussalmi 2. In a billiard hall in Turku 3. Reindeer round-up in Inari 4. Parolannummi garrison 5. The declaration of Christmas peace, Turku 6. Snowplough at the break of dawn 7. The silence of Puolanka 8. Ski jumping competition at Salpausselkä, Lahti 9. The viskuumasiina at Suonenjoki 10. Spring birds at Kaunissaari, Eurajoki 11. Suvivirsi 12. The Lehtimato tram 13. Motorbikes at Kuusankoski 14. Washing carpets at the pier 15. Steamship Tarjanne talking off, Tampere 16. Skateboarding at Eliel square, Helsinki 17. Ehtookellot at Laajasalo districkt, Helsinki 18. In the sauna
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