Cold world: the deathly void of sound | Intellect Skip to content
Volume 2, Issue 2
  • ISSN: 1751-4193
  • E-ISSN: 1751-4207


The essay begins by proposing an auditory engagement with the paintings of Caravaggio. By interpreting visual representations of sound and listening in visual media, it is possible to construct a more comprehensive history of listening prior to the invention of sound recording in the late nineteenth century. A relationship is suggested between seventeenth century devices such as Samuel van Hoogstraten's and the beginnings of cinema. The essay also makes links between indications of microsound in painting and the growing importance of hyper-real sound design in American cinema between 1967 and 1979. The use of pop songs in films after Kenneth Anger's is explored, leading to a mapping of the connections between quasi-documentary narrative film, hip hop sampling, crime fiction and David Simon's television series, .


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  • Article Type: Article
Keyword(s): Caravaggio; crime fiction; film sound; hip hop; sound design; The Wire
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