Free Essay

The Sound of Life

In: English and Literature

Submitted By lameyjamie
Words 594
Pages 3
"...the drill operator shuts off the machine, quiets the crowd, and listens. I wonder what it was that he listened for. How faint? How rhythmic? He listens, his hand on the machine until he finally hears or feels the rhythmic noise of the trapped men hammering at the steel- the sole musical evidence of survival." (261-267) in this, Steven Church gives a very illustrative narration of a crowd of people waiting to hear the sound of trapped miners signaling their life from underground. In Church's "Auscultation", the underlying theme is that sound is essential to life. Sound can mean more than words ever could.

Steven Church's "Auscultation" is a 4 chamber essay. Personally, I believe that the 4 chambers represent the 4 chambers of the heart. This is relevant due to the topic of the essay; the sound of life. The first chamber sets the tone by describing a mine that collapsed leaving 6 miners trapped in the deathly grasp of the mountain. The second chamber introduces the stethoscope as an essential part of life. The third chamber expresses the importance of the stethoscope, what makes a doctor a doctor, and the different instruments that a doctor has. The fourth and final chamber ends the essay by describing another devastating collapse leaving 9 coal miners trapped by rising water leaving families as well as other miners on edge about the life of their coworker, friend, or loved one.

The essay compares a baby's heartbeat to the sound of a sledgehammer hitting metal within the womb of the cave -or stomach. This is because both of those sounds indicate life. Church describes this by musing that the doctors are "...hopelessly dependent on the curl and twisting turns of simple listening technology, the only tool for the vital job of reading and feeling the rhythmic thumps of the heart, that tap-tap-tap signal of life we cannot see and I can in no other way sense." (226) Church interprets what the doctors listen for through the stethoscope as being much the same as the sound drill operators listen for when miners are trapped; the sound of life.

The sound of life can be portrayed in many different ways. In the essay, Church gives a few examples. He uses "rap and thump" (14) to illustrate the sound of miners within a collapsed mountain. "whoosh-whoosh" (179), and "tap, tap, tap" (226) are how the baby inside the mother's womb are represented. Sound isn't only important because it depicts life or death, but because it's a way of communication throughout the world. In Chamber 3 it mentions different instruments (i.e trumpet, saxophone, baritone, etc.) which are universal. Music can convey emotions through the sounds it makes without speaking, breaking any language barrier making it important to life.

In Church's "Auscultation", the underlying theme is that sound is essential to life. Sound can mean more than words ever could. Whether it be for communication, or to signal life, sound is imperative. At the beginning of Chamber 1, church paints a picture for the essay by illustrating the chilling atmosphere of everyone waiting to hear the sound of the trapped miners: "...they also erected seismic listening devices on the surface and set off three dynamite charges, a signal to any surviving miners to make noise. Lots of noise. The electronic ears listened for the sound of hammers pounding on the rock and on the roof bolts, the telltale rap-and-thump of human life. we listened and listened but never heard a thing." (8-15)

Similar Documents

Free Essay

Sound Tracks to My Life

...Sound Tracks to My Life I wonder if there is such a thing as a good addiction, because I’m sure as hell addicted to music. When I think of music I think of an escape. I can be doing anything at any given moment and put in a pair of head phones and be completely in another world. Without music, my day is completely empty and boring. I wake up to music; I go to school listening to music and even eat to it. Music is a source of joy, stress, tears, camaraderie and fulfillment for me. What would life be without music? The world would be a very quiet place. Music for me is a reminder of how things once were an indication of how things are, and a view of where society is headed. Music is a direct reflection of the picture of society. Music can be a way to deliver messages, a poetic medium, a fine art, or nothing more than a source of entertainment. No matter what it is used for, music is the perfect art and my life would be that much less complete without it. Two songs come to mind when I think about all these sources of completeness for myself. First is “Proud to Be an American” by Lee Greenwood and “You and Me” by Soldier of Jah Army. I often think of the words of Lee Greenwood’s song “God Bless the USA” in which he states:”And I’m proud to be an American where at least I know I’m free....” I wholeheartedly agree. My heart swells with gratitude to God and this wonderful land where, regardless of whom I am or what my goals are, I have that priceless gift of freedom. Freedom......

Words: 1465 - Pages: 6

Free Essay

Sonny

...English 175 11/28/11 Literature Essay Sounds of Music Some people say that certain music to people make them do extraordinary things. People hear their life through music they listen to or like and that is how they live it. This is the case for the novel Sonny Blues written by James Baldwin. The story is about two brothers who come to understand each other, more specifically, through its two main characters, two sides of the African-American experience. Sounds of Music Some people say that certain music to people make them do extraordinary things. People hear their life through music they listen to or like and that is how they live it. This is the case for the novel Sonny Blues written by James Baldwin. The story is about two brothers who come to understand each other, more specifically, through its two main characters, two sides of the African-American experience. Sounds of Music Some people say that certain music to people make them do extraordinary things. People hear their life through music they listen to or like and that is how they live it. This is the case for the novel Sonny Blues written by James Baldwin. The story is about two brothers who come to understand each other, more specifically, through its two main characters, two sides of the African-American experience. Sounds of Music Some people say that certain music to people make them do extraordinary things. People hear their life through music they listen to or like and that is how they......

Words: 3512 - Pages: 15

Premium Essay

That It Will Never Come Again

...that life is beautiful and people should enjoy it while it lasts. Dickinson feels that since life only happens once explains why it "makes life so sweet." The poem then shifts the idea to that death feels like an "appetite/ Precisely opposite." In the poem, the poet conveys the message that people should appreciate life by using sound devices and metaphors. In the first stanza, the poet utilizes sound devices to create the effect of life being "sweet." Dickinson's method of alliteration and repetition in line three "Believing in what we don't believe," fabricates the significance of life being delightful by making the poem have a mellifluous sound. The poet uses the technique of consonance in line five "That if it be, it be at best," to elaborate on the overall meaning of the poem by creating a harmonic effect. The use of sound devices helps the reader understand that life is a pleasant experience by constructing a delectable sound. The poet then shifts the poem through the regulation of a metaphor. Dickinson states that the experience transitions to in line six to an "ablative estate." This demonstrates the alteration from life to a different state metaphorically meaning death. The poet gets the point across that life does come to an end and it will make a person realize that life is a one time only experience. Dickinson portrays the message that death "instigates an appetite/ Precisely opposite," which relates to the overall meaning that people should appreciate life.......

Words: 358 - Pages: 2

Free Essay

Soundselfie

...Jessica Thomson Porter Media in Everyday Life 15 May 2014 #SoundSelfie A sound is what we sense through our sense of hearing. A selfie is what defines who you personally are or is a self-representation of yourself. The two words come together in harmony to create a #SoundSeflie. Anything can be included in your #SoundSelfie, as long as it is composed of sounds that relate to you. A #SoundSelfie is not just a bunch of random noises or sounds taken from your everyday life and meshed together just for the fun of it. Rather, it is comprised of noises or sounds that represent who you are. A couple things I thought critically about when creating my #SoundSelfie was how I wanted to go about composing my sounds and why I chose the sounds I did in order to represent myself in a unique way. When first starting to create my #SoundSelfie, I thought what better way to represent myself than to record my everyday routine. I started the project one morning and took the recording device with me wherever I went that day. I basically took a recording of every sound I heard that day, even if it was the slightest, most discrete sound. After a day’s worth of recording almost all of the sounds of my day, the next step was reviewing the sounds and narrowing them down to my top 20 sounds. The sounds I chose in my top 20 sounds were ones I felt were the most captivating and different. I tried thinking about my audience......

Words: 579 - Pages: 3

Free Essay

Classical Music

...A massive body of water that lies in located in the pacific northwest; the Puget Sound is  2,800 miles of saltwater that has been underappreciated for quite some time. A very important asset to  the state of Washington, the resources we gather from this area are an essential part of our economy.  Water pollution is not a new topic of discussion rather a problem that has gone on for almost the last  hundred years. I am proposing a plan to help ensure that the puget sound will be preserved for future  generations to come. This is for all residents and business that are directly impacted by the effects that  pollution has on the Puget Sound. I want to develop a system that would help to sustain this great  eco­system for generations to come by reducing the number of toxic pollutants by twenty percent over  the next five years.  The most effective way to reduce pollution is to remove any toxic chemicals from the puget  sound that are a part of any outdated or unnecessary landmarks throughout the state. The fox island  ferry dock and terminal  is no longer in use and was replaced by the fox island bridge in 1954. The old  wooden dock contains 182  pilings that are treated in creosote; a toxic chemical that greatly impacts  the growth of salmon and also affects their immune system. In order to preserve the puget sound these  types of materials must be eliminated. Jim Braden, the president of the Fox Island Community and ......

Words: 1039 - Pages: 5

Premium Essay

A Sound

...I remember a sound in my dream that was telling me that I should make the most out of my life. The sound was saying that I am the captain of my own ship. However, I ignored the sound because I thought that I had all that I ever wanted in life. After waking up in the morning, I thought to myself. I reflected on all the terrible things I had done with my life and thought that the sound was right. However, I told myself that it was just but a dream. Little did I know that the sound was trying to drive me out of the bad things that I was doing into engaging into a righteous lifestyle. However, I thought that a righteous lifestyle was meant for those people who were desperate in life. I therefore continued to live my life as I used to without caring about tomorrow. However, after I was declared jobless and I had spent all my resources on lavish activities, I sat down and thought about the voice that was once telling me to refrain from the lavish activities. I started thinking that the voice in my dreams was trying to direct me on the right path but I ignored it. Now is the high time that I am beginning to think of the things that I should have done when I first heard the voice in my dreams telling me that I should make the most out of my life. I am now aware that I should have listened to the inner voice that was telling me about molding my life when I still had the chance to do...

Words: 280 - Pages: 2

Premium Essay

Looking for the Music in John Cage 4'33

...had a strong belief that every sound should be considered as a form of music. By combining his theories of invention with his compositional techniques he led music into the modern world. Many music critics have suggested that Cage was more of an inventor rather than a composer. Speaking on Cage, Arnold Schoenberg (1994) states “Of course he's not a composer, but he's an inventor -- of genius” (Perloff & Junkerman, P 157). Whether an inventor or composer, there is no denying that Cage’s composition “4.33” also known as “four and a half minutes of silence” has led to considerable controversy. It has also forced us to look closely at the definition of music. The 1952 piece, in which performer David Tudor sat at the piano for four minutes and thirty-three seconds marking off the time in three movements but did not play a single note, tested the idea that there is no such thing as silence. Cage (1988) claims that “Everything we do is music" and “try as we may to make a silence, we cannot.”(Kostelanetz, 1988, P69-70). I intend to examine “4.33” and determine whether it is possible for us to appreciate Cage’s ideology and hear the music in his favourite composition. Cage was heavily influenced by the eastern philosophy and it taught him to perceive music in a whole new light. Cage’s idea for 4.33 however, emerged after his experience at Harvard University where he spent time in and anechoic chamber (a room designed to stop reflections of either sound or electromagnetic......

Words: 1690 - Pages: 7

Free Essay

Bells by Edgar Allen Poe

...movement through a person’s life. In the first stanza silver sleigh bells represent childhood. Silver is a precious metal but not as precious as gold or the next stage of life. The bells “tinkle, tinkle, tinkle” (4) which represents playful and merry times. The poem uses i- sounds, joyful verbs such as “twinkle,” and phrases like “jingling and tinkling” (14) to bring us back to childhood. In the second stanza, the type of bell is a wedding bell made of gold. Gold is a very precious and expensive medal just as your wedding day is the most important day of your life. The bells show happiness with words like “delight” using long i- sounds. These sounds make the stanza richer and more resident. This makes the stanza seem longer and more important. The “swinging and ringing”(31) tell of dancing and having fun. According to Poe, this day is one you will never forget. In the third stanza, the bells are alarm bells made of brass. They represent fear and terror. The time of life Poe is portraying is old age. The author uses long e sounds such as “shriek” to show that the person is realizing they are getting old and aren’t as young as as they used to be. The “tale of terror,” (38) informs the reader that this is not a happy part of life but a worrisome stage. A person in their older age tends to be surprised or startled once they realize they are no longer in their youth. In the fourth stanza, the bells funeral bells made of iron which have a more drawn out deep sound. The......

Words: 329 - Pages: 2

Premium Essay

The Good Life

...of the Good Life Everyone has their own view on what success means to them. Some people believe that money and/or expensive material items determine how successful a person is. Other people believe that success is measured by how happy a person is with his or her life, by measuring their job satisfaction or their family life. I believe that a person is truly successful when he or she has lived their life to the fullest and is completely content with where they have wound up in the end and has no regrets. In this brief essay I will be telling you about my view on true success in life. I will start off by telling you why material success could be included in my opinion, then I will tell you why a good quality of life is a big part, and finally I will tell you my exact view on what I want my future to look like so that I know that I have, in my opinion, had a successful life. First, I will begin with some of the material items that some people think they need to be successful and why. People that think they need material items to be successful in life probably will not go a day in their life without working and on top of that they will probably end up hating their job. This however will not change their view on what it means to be successful. There is no doubt that they will be happy with the beach house in Florida or the million dollar Lamborghini Maserati, but for what exactly? To be miserable at the job that has gotten you to this point in life. All of that sounds......

Words: 1011 - Pages: 5

Free Essay

Use of Koans in Zen Buddhism

...Relation between Koan and Zen Meditation Because koan is the Way which leads a person to mindfulness, koan is essential to Zen Buddhism. Zen Buddhism has had such great influence on the life and culture of Japan. Zen Buddhism is a “just sitting” style of Japanese Buddhism that has been influenced by Chinese Zen. The person who discovered or revised this technique was Tendai monk Eisai. “Eisai went to Mountain Tiantai in China and practiced by eliminating all traditional aspects of Chinese Zen Buddhism except for shikantaza (just sitting) and the meditation of koans (puzzles aimed at overcoming dualistic thoughts) and returned to Japan with Zen” (Koller 278). As Eisai returned, he forcefully headed to Kamakura to establish new temple. At Kamakura, Samurais recognized the importance of Zen in mental detachment and practices of daily life, they allowed Eisai to flourish the temple and after his death, Samurais built Rinzai school of Zen which exercised great influence in Japanese culture, thoughts, and philosophy. The origin of Japanese tea culture is also from Rinzai. Similar to original Buddhism, Zen Buddhism is not a theory or a conception of the world but it is practical experience. A person who meditates is already a Buddhist. One cannot truly understand or comprehend Zen Buddhism until experiencing it. “While intellectual understanding and thinking only grasp the subjects of representation of things, experiencing not only grasps subjects but also does not have......

Words: 3157 - Pages: 13

Premium Essay

Classical Conditioning

...qwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmrtyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmrtyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmrtyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmrtyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwer...

Words: 779 - Pages: 4

Premium Essay

Fall - a Time of Transition

...spending quality time outdoors enjoying nature. The knowledge of this seasonal period of transition awakens, in me, a more keen awareness of my surroundings than at any other time of year. The deeper appreciation comes from knowing that the good weather days are coming to an end. The fall season conjures up all sorts of analogies in my mind. For example, football and basketball games are divided into four quarters, a dollar is divided by four quarters, the calendar year is divided into four quarters, and the human life span might also be divided into four 20 year parts, assuming that we live an average of 80 years. In all these examples, the third period precedes the fourth (end stage) and is significant because it signals the beginning of the end of something that we either enjoy or are experiencing. The most intriguing analogy is the comparison of life and the seasons of the year. Without a lot of effort we can draw the analogy between each of the four periods of life and the four quarters of the year. Fall is the third period of the year, a...

Words: 1346 - Pages: 6

Premium Essay

Raft Report "Good for Your Ears"

...Good for your ears, the purpose of life Good Ear (The Organ columnist) Did you hear something? Maybe the sound you heard was a humming bird singing a tune. Or maybe it was loud, like a drummer banging to the beat. The magnificent sounds of life are wonderful at least for now. I can hear everything around me since my name is Mr. Good Ears. With all of this being said, I am outraged by the way you young rock stars take me for granted. Just because I am small in size and appear to sit around all day doing nothing doesn’t mean I have no purpose in life. You see, for the last 14 years, I have been on your left and right side of your face. Every day of my life that I can remember, I’ve had to sit through all the physical and verbal abuse that you jerk like to call music. I just want to tell you that as an ear; I do have many purposes in life. In case you guys don’t know, sounds are everywhere, and you jerks have two cool parts on your body that let you hear them all: me, your ears? I am made up of three different parts: the outer ear, the middle ear, and the inner ear. I am in charge of collecting sounds, processing them, and even sending the sound waves to my neighbor your brain. My outer ear called the pinna is the part of me that people can see. It’s the part that you rock stars use to put holes in me. Another words, it’s what people pierce to wear earrings and what your friend whispers into when it’s time for a secret. Eyeglasses......

Words: 708 - Pages: 3

Free Essay

Scene Analysis Paper

...When Your Life’s in the Toilet A person is highly influenced by those around them. Everyone always seems to find a niche and stick with the people in that environment, whether it is a good one or not. Danny Boyle’s 1996 film Trainspotting is a story about a man who is trying to quit drugs, specifically heroin, but is stuck with the wrong crowd of people. His mind in constantly in an acid trip and the film shows us what he sees. The scene in the public bathroom in particular stands out and shows the struggles faced by Mark and his need to get clean through a great narrative style, great Mis-en-Scene, and finally sound; all of which carefully reflects what the character is feeling. The scene is set up directly after the opening of the film where the main character, Mark Renton gives a long dialogue and sets out to find one last hit, or drug use, before quitting heroin cold turkey. He is sorely disappointed when his dealer does not give him heroin, but instead sells him opiate suppositories. As he is walking back home, the opiate suppositories have a severe laxative effect and Mark has to run into a public toilet, known as “the worst toilet in Scotland,” to relieve himself. The words “the worst……in Scotland” are non-diegetic; they are not originally on the door. He goes to the bathroom and does his business but then realizes the drugs he put in his rectum had not dissolved and are now in the toilet. His severe need for drugs is shown when he does not hesitate to reach......

Words: 1491 - Pages: 6

Premium Essay

Research

...enhance the brand name so our focus is more on Image Building Call-to-action:”Sound is life” As it is the one of the important part of our lives, Sound is not only music, but Sound covers many other important aspects as well and we have the sound solution that is quality voice / sound output devices in very reasonable prices i.e. in every once range and with back up support. Audionic equipment is a turn on to your life Tone: Fun, Music, Energy, Passion Key Message: Corporate Brand Building with focusing on features like quality, reliability, and convenience etc. We are the distinguished Sound Masters Secondary Message: Should cover the product range in the message as well as the usage of products i.e. music etc Q) What are the objectives of the Promotion? Brand image, communication with customers in a way they feel proud to the part of Audionic, Consumers pull. Q) What do we want it to do? How do we want the target audience to react? To register the brand name Audionic, as a strong premium choice in the consumers’ minds. To make Audionic a generic name in the category. When it comes to sound it always “Audionic” Q) What is the target audience? Not just demographics, but lifestyle, attitudes etc? SEC C and above Core target market is between 13-30- Conversant to new technology ie technology savy, trendy, ambitious with a positive go getter attitude towards life Q) What will be we saying? Tone of Voice? Brand...

Words: 397 - Pages: 2