Gustavus Stadler

4:00PM Gustavus Stadler, Haverford College

“Sound, Recording, and Racial Violence” 

My presentation draws from a piece published five years ago, on lynching and early phonography, and explores the directions a broader project on sound, recording, memory, and racial violence in US culture might take.

Auditors are requested to read the attached article, “Never Heard Such a Thing: Lynching and Phonographic Modernity” Social Text 102 (2010).

I also plan to talk about two other primary objects of analysis: the 1890s “dialect” story “Po’ Sandy” by the African American writer Charles Chesnutt; and the 1950 sound collage about the Peekskill, NY race riots, “The Peekskill Story,” produced by Tony Schwartz, Pete Seeger, and others. Time permitting, auditors may read that story, which is available here, and listen to the Peekskill recording here. I will use this material to invite a discussion of some problems with the way race has and hasn’t figured in what gets called “sound studies.”