Radio, Television, Digital Media

Faculty Advisor

Jay Needham


Silence is remarkable, both in concept and in reality. The human ear is outstanding at doing what it was made for. Not only can it withstand loud sound, but can also recognize the softest and most intricate whisperings, as well as everything in between. The ear can recognize all of these sounds and passes them on to our brains for interpretation. Our ears collect all sound but our brains determine what to focus on and what to ignore. But what if there are no “important” sounds? What if you are sitting alone in an empty room, making no unnecessary sounds? Is this silence?

When someone says silence I tend to immediately hear a complete absence of sound. Although I have never heard this, it would be as the dictionary defines the term. However this is often not what we mean. Instead we are generally referring to a lack of voice or other man-made sounds. The silences that people hear on a daily basis are special to them. It will change based on where they are as well as who they are. What changes have happened to our sonic environment to get us to where we are today?

Everyday silence is not true silence. What is silence in the ‘modern’ world?