- About the Companion Website: www.oup.com/us/ohss
- The Oxford Handbook of Sound Studies
- New Keys to the World of Sound
- The Garden in the Machine: Listening to Early American Industrialization
- Turning a Deaf Ear? Industrial Noise and Noise Control in Germany since the 1920s
- “Sobbing, Whining, Rumbling”: Listening to Automobiles as Social Practice
- Selling Sound: Testing, Designing, and Marketing Sound in the European Car Industry
- Sound Sterile: Making Scientific Field Recordings in Ornithology
- Underwater Music: Tuning Composition to the Sounds of Science
- A Gray Box: The Phonograph in Laboratory Experiments and Fieldwork, 1900–1920
- From Scientific Instruments to Musical Instruments: The Tuning Fork, the Metronome, and the Siren
- Conversions: Sound and Sight, Military and Civilian
- The Search for the “Killer Application”: Drawing the Boundaries around the Sonification of Scientific Data
- Inner and Outer Sancta: Earplugs and Hospitals
- Sounding Bodies: Medical Students and the Acquisition of Stethoscopic Perspectives
- Do Signals Have Politics? Inscribing Abilities in Cochlear Implants
- Sound and Player Immersion in Digital Games
- The Sonic Playpen: Sound Design and Technology in Pixar’s Animated Shorts
- The Avant-Garde in the Family Room: American Advertising and the Domestication of Electronic Music in the 1960s and 1970s
- Visibly Audible: The Radio Dial as Mediating Interface
- From Listening to Distribution: Nonofficial Music Practices in Hungary and Czechoslovakia from the 1960s to the 1980s
- The Amateur in the Age of Mechanical Music
- Online Music Sites as Sonic Sociotechnical Communities: Identity, Reputation, and Technology at ACIDplanet.com
- Analog Turns Digital: Hip-Hop, Technology, and the Maintenance of Racial Authenticity
- iPod Culture: The Toxic Pleasures of Audiotopia
- The Recording That Never Wanted to Be Heard and Other Stories of Sonification
Abstract and Keywords
This article suggests that historians in the United States have ignored the aural history of early industrialization. It suggests that the transition to industrialism has been misleadingly slipped into a binary understanding, which makes artificial distinctions between a “quiet” countryside and a “loud” factory shop floor that would not always have been apparent to the people who, in fact, experienced the transition. It stresses the preeminent importance of context in that transition. Workers accepted Lowell's noise because they were the sounds of freedom and not those of slavery and because they were framed within a larger matrix of paternalism and Romanticism. Lowell workers mediated their transition from rural to factory life through the aural idioms of religion, nature, and the emerging capitalist mode of production suggest that they were active participants in the same processes, their voices contributing in important ways to those transitions.
Mark M. Smith is Carolina Distinguished Professor of History at the University of South Carolina. He is author or editor of a dozen books, including Mastered by the Clock: Time, Slavery, and Freedom in the American South, winner of the Organization of American Historians' Avery O. Craven Award and South Carolina Historical Society's Book of the Year in 1997. He is the current President of The Historical Society.
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