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Article

Preserving Human Perspectives in Cultural Heritage Acoustics: Distance Cues and Proxemics in Aural Heritage Fieldwork

by 1,*,†, 2,† and 3,†
1
Department of Music, Amherst College, Amherst, MA 01002, USA
2
Audio Engineering Technology, The Mike Curb College of Entertainment and Music Business, Belmont University, Nashville, TN 37212, USA
3
Department of Electrical, Computer, and Telecommunications Engineering Technology, College of Engineering Technology, Rochester Institute of Technology, Rochester, NY 14623, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Academic Editor: Francesco Aletta
Acoustics 2021, 3(1), 156-176; https://doi.org/10.3390/acoustics3010012
Received: 1 January 2021 / Revised: 25 February 2021 / Accepted: 25 February 2021 / Published: 3 March 2021
(This article belongs to the Collection Historical Acoustics)
We examine the praxis implications of our working definition of aural heritage: spatial acoustics as physically experienced by humans in cultural contexts; aligned with the aims of anthropological archaeology (the study of human life from materials). Here we report on human-centered acoustical data collection strategies from our project “Digital Preservation and Access to Aural Heritage via a Scalable, Extensible Method,” supported by the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) in the USA. The documentation and accurate translation of human sensory perspectives is fundamental to the ecological validity of cultural heritage fieldwork and the preservation of heritage acoustics. Auditory distance cues, which enable and constrain sonic communication, relate to proxemics, contextualized understandings of distance relationships that are fundamental to human social interactions. We propose that source–receiver locations in aural heritage measurements should be selected to represent a comprehensive range of proxemics according to site-contextualized spatial-use scenarios, and we identify and compare acoustical metrics for auditory distance cues from acoustical fieldwork we conducted using this strategy in three contrasting case-study heritage sites. This conceptual shift from architectural acoustical sampling to aural heritage sampling prioritizes culturally and physically plausible human auditory/sound-sensing perspectives and relates them to spatial proxemics as scaled architecturally. View Full-Text
Keywords: heritage acoustics; archaeoacoustics; archaeological acoustics; historical acoustics; architectural acoustics; acoustical preservation; acoustical fieldwork; acoustical surveying; auralization fieldwork; intangible cultural heritage heritage acoustics; archaeoacoustics; archaeological acoustics; historical acoustics; architectural acoustics; acoustical preservation; acoustical fieldwork; acoustical surveying; auralization fieldwork; intangible cultural heritage
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MDPI and ACS Style

Kolar, M.A.; Ko, D.; Kim, S. Preserving Human Perspectives in Cultural Heritage Acoustics: Distance Cues and Proxemics in Aural Heritage Fieldwork. Acoustics 2021, 3, 156-176. https://doi.org/10.3390/acoustics3010012

AMA Style

Kolar MA, Ko D, Kim S. Preserving Human Perspectives in Cultural Heritage Acoustics: Distance Cues and Proxemics in Aural Heritage Fieldwork. Acoustics. 2021; 3(1):156-176. https://doi.org/10.3390/acoustics3010012

Chicago/Turabian Style

Kolar, Miriam A., Doyuen Ko, and Sungyoung Kim. 2021. "Preserving Human Perspectives in Cultural Heritage Acoustics: Distance Cues and Proxemics in Aural Heritage Fieldwork" Acoustics 3, no. 1: 156-176. https://doi.org/10.3390/acoustics3010012

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