Central European Network for Sonic Ecologies


The Second Life of Recorded Sounds

3rd CENSE Annual Conference

22 – 24 October 2020

The history of sound recording and the recording process itself are key concerns for the field of sound studies. In recent years, researchers have discovered increasingly older forms of sound recording and inscription (e.g. research conducted by the First Sounds Group on Scott de Martinville’s phonautograph resulted in moving the date of the beginning of sound recording back to the 1860s.) Meanwhile, the notion of a “second life” of recorded sounds represents an important area for further inquiry. This notion refers to the problem of re-using archival, non-musical recordings in scientific research, as well as in the context of artistic, educational, environmental and political activities. Various types of sound archives offer important resources for historical, cultural, media, anthropological, musicological or sociological studies, as well as valuable material for artists. It is worthwhile to research within not only institutional contexts, but also private sound archives and collections, whether recently established or those with a long tradition. Today, the common practice of recording the sounds of everyday life using smartphones and portable recorders also raises questions about the future fate of these vast repositories of recordings.

Sound and Environment: New CENSE Conference Publication from 2019, 2020

The publication is a culmination of the international interdisciplinary conference Murmurans Mundus: Sonic Ecology and Beyond, which took place in October 2019 at the Faculty of Art and Design of Jan Evangelista Purkyně University in Ústí nad Labem organized in cooperation with partners from Poland, Hungary, and Slovakia. The book focuses on current matters of acoustic ecology at the intersection of fine arts, design, music, and education, and it explores the possibilities that this discipline has to offer for reflection on today’s transforming world. The book was published in both English and Czech. (From the preface.)