This is a past event
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Aliki Perroti & Seth Frank Lyceum, CHI Think Tank (Room 101)
  • Open to the Public

Presented by the Sexuality, Women's and Gender Studies Department, Pavitra Sundar, Associate Professor of Literature at Hamilton College, will discuss her recent book Listening with a Feminist Ear: Soundwork in Bombay Cinema.

Listening with a Feminist Ear is a study of the cultural politics and possibilities of sound in cinema. Eschewing ocularcentric and siloed disciplinary formations, the book takes seriously the radical theoretical and methodological potential of listening. It models a feminist interpretive practice that is not just attuned to how power and privilege are materialized in sound, but that engenders new, counter-hegemonic imaginaries.

Focusing on mainstream Bombay cinema, Sundar identifies singing, listening, and speaking as key sites in which gendered notions of identity and difference take form. Charting new paths through seven decades of film, media, and cultural history, Sundar identifies key shifts in women’s playback voices and the Islamicate genre of the qawwali. She also conceptualizes spoken language as sound, and turns up the volume on a capacious, multilingual politics of belonging that scholarly and popular accounts of nation typically render silent. All in all, Listening with a Feminist Ear offers a critical sonic sensibility that reinvigorates debates about the gendering of voice and body in cinema, and the role of sound and media in conjuring community.

This event is free and open to the public. Light refreshments will be provided.

Co-sponsored by the Film and Media Studies Program, the Lucius Root Eastman 1895 Lecture Fund, and the Georges Lurcy Lecture Series Endowment

Contact Info

Stephanie Orion
(413) 542-5781
Please call the college operator at 413-542-2000 or e-mail info@amherst.edu if you require contact info @amherst.edu