Asunción López-Varela on A Fragmented Relation
Sonic Futures: Soundscapes and the Languages of Screen Media conference hosted by Birkbeck and King’s College, University of London 23 – 26 june 2011
INTERMEDIA SOUNDSCAPES: POLITICS AND MEMORY
Asunción López-Varela (Université Complutense de Madrid)
From Ear to …Where? The Sound of Empathy in Multimodal Communication
Abstract : A Fragmented Relation <http://vimeo.com/4812716> is a project by Annie Abrahams, pioneer of networked performance art. Abrahams’ projects show the frustrations experienced in interpersonal relations mediated through virtual environments, mainly computer interaction, at a time when social networks celebrate the potential for intersubjectivity, connectivity and collaborative practices. Her performances show that communication guided by digital machines does not follow the same rules nor uses the same abilities as communication in real environments. She refers to the Internet as “a public space of solitude,” where people can experiment multiple sides of their personality, opening up a whole new area for human behavior: “two images, two voices answer one another, they get lost, they search, they look for the other. During machine mediated communication, is the other most present when nothing happens, when at least I think of him, her, the other?”, writes Abrahams.
Using as example Abraham’s work this paper seeks to inquiry into the impact of sound in online communication, and explore how much of human interaction with media depends on common perceptual capacities and how much on socio-cultural aspects. It also seeks to assess the impact of interpersonal relations and empathy in online environments.
The article will be published in Social Sciences and Humanities – Applications and Theories, ISBN 979-953-307-527-2, Edited by Prof. M. Asunción Lopez-Varela Azcarate