Dr Marie Thompson
Nominated Fellow, September - October 2019
Home Institution: University of Lincoln
In the context of sound studies, reproduction refers to the mediation, repetition and distribution of recorded sound: it pertains to discourses of sonic realism and fidelity; and the histories and practices of recording technologies. Yet reproduction has many other connotations. As a biological process, it is considered fundamental to the continuation of life, while its associations with femininity and feminized modes of work have made reproduction a central concept for feminist theory. My current research project – Sounding Reproduction – critically re-evaluates sonic reproduction in relation to feminist theories of social, sexual and aesthetic reproduction. Interdisciplinary in its scope and focus, this project aims to present an account of the gendered politics of sound that attends to the ways in which social, economic and auditory life shape and are shaped by technologies, subjects, affects, spaces and labour relations. I aim to consider various reproductive technologies, practices and phenomena – including dysfunctional spirit mediums, functional music in the domestic workplace, sonic sleep aids and the ‘uterine audiophilia’ of pre-natal speaker systems – and, in doing so, ask how understandings of sonic reproduction might be productively expanded beyond its technical definitions.
Marie Thompson is a Senior Lecturer at the University of Lincoln’s School of Film and media. She is the author of Beyond Unwanted Sound: Noise, Affect and Aesthetic Moralism (Bloomsbury, 2017) and co-editor of Sound, Music, Affect: Theorizing Sonic Experience (Bloomsbury, 2013). Marie co-leads, with Annie Goh, Sonic Cyberfeminisms – an ongoing project interrogating the relationships between gender, sound and technology.