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Historical Sound Walks

June 4, 2013

Buffalo Doug

Historian Michael Harcourt takes students on “historical sound walks.” I find his 5 criteria for students to pay attention to a place fascinating:

Power – It is a place which reveals power relations in society. Its meaning for some people might have been silenced or marginalized in the past. Perhaps some people felt or continue to feel a sense of belonging there while others are excluded.
Legendary – The place is ‘storied’. People tell legends there and it is used to sustain myths.
Affected by change – The place has changed over time, either physically or in terms of how it is used or viewed.
Contested and connected – The place is argued over and is or was a source of debate. People may feel a strong sense of connection to it, often for different reasons.
Evocative – The place is one where you can ‘feel’…

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