human noise

Big ideas can sometimes be so simple that it’s embarrassing.

Take the latest ‘big idea’ series to grace the airwaves of BBC Radio 4.

Put in one sentence, it’s about the role sound has played in the last 100,000 years of human history.

Our guide through this story is Professor David Hendy of Sussex University, one of whose books about radio I’m currently staring at on the bookshelf in the room where I write.

Made in handy-sized 15 minute chunks, scheduled between ‘The World at One’ and ‘The Archers,’ we’re about half way through its 30 parts.

What I love about it is that it allows room for radio to do what it does best – and let sound speak for itself.

The latest episode I heard made particularly effective use of acoustics in large buildings, designed for worship.

The series website has all the episodes so far broadcast, and I’m sure you’ll find something to catch your ear.

Noise: A Human History – BBC iPlayer

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