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Durham University

Department of English Studies

Event Archive

This is an archive of past events within the Department of English Studies. Please see our current events for forthcoming activities.

Some of our public events are recorded and are available as podcasts via our Research English At Durham blog.

Narrating Human Experience: An Interdisciplinary Approach to Sound

19th August 2015, 17:30 to 19:00, Alington House, Elise Gayraud

Based on an experimental short film investigating human-nature interaction and the experience of sound, the first lecture in our series of Late Summer Lectures explores the understanding and perceptions of creative ethnographic narratives.

Having taken part in an Ethnographic Film making workshop, I would be very keen to introduce this lecture by presenting the result of my work and that of my team, from which I have the approval for disseminating our research. Filmed at Killhope in June 2014, the film "Sounding and Re-Sounding: An ethnographic encounter of natural and industrial echoes" (3'41") considers the use of water in the mining industry and the natural risks it raises.

The narrative follows the sound of water through an industrial site, exploring the relationship between people and their landscape in rural England. In examining the resounding water running through nature and man-made machinery, and using the testimonies of former miners and museum curators, it takes on an ethnographic look at the interaction between man and nature.

Through the sensory experience of sound, and the individual perceptions of natural risks, this research takes an interdisciplinary approach to the narration of human experience notably touching topics of narrative and literary aesthetics, ethnography, cultural anthropology and psychology. Accordingly, this lecture analyses and challenges current methods of researching, interpreting and disseminating interdisciplinary studies within academia and to the community.

Crucially distinct from documentary, explanatory reportage and collection of experiential personal narrations, the aesthetical choices in the realisation of an audiovisual ethnographic encounter have a significant impact on the audience's perceptions of the subject and its challenges. If you give me the opportunity, I will give an interdisciplinary research-based lecture extrapolating this original piece of research to grasp an understanding of interdisciplinary knowledge dissemination through creative work and new media.

About Late Summer Lectures

Now in its sixth year, the Late Summer Lecture Series enables doctoral and postdoctoral student from the Department of English in Durham, Newcastle, and York to broadcast their ground-breaking research to a wider audience. The full programme for the latest instalment is now available for viewing on the Late Summer Lecture Series website, and reflects the diverse and exploratory nature of research currently undertaken by scholars in the North East.

Podcasts from previous lecture series can be downloaded via Research English At Durham.

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Research in English At Durham (READ) blog showcasing the the literary research emerging from the Department of English Studies


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