The Hum of the World is an invitation to contemplate what would
happen if we heard the world as attentively as we see it. Balancing
big ideas with playful wit and lyrical prose, this imaginative
volume identifies the role of sound in Western experience as the
primary medium in which the presence and persistence of life
acquire tangible form. The positive experience of aliveness is not
merely in accord with sound, but inaccessible, even inconceivable,
without it. Lawrence Kramer's poetic book roves freely over music,
media, language, philosophy, and science from the ancient world to
the present, along the way revealing how life is apprehended
through sounds ranging from pandemonium to the faint background hum
of the world. Easily moving from reflections on pivotal texts and
music to the introduction of elemental concepts, this warm
meditation on auditory culture uncovers the knowledge and pleasure
made available when we recognize that the world is alive with
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