Forum From the Archives: David George Haskell on Preserving The Earth’s Sonic Diversity


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From the roar of wind against mountains and the slam of waves on the shore to early morning birdsong, the sounds that fill our natural world are not only beautiful, they’re at risk, writes biologist David George Haskell in his new book, “Sounds Wild and Broken.” Haskell describes a global sonic landscape that’s threatened by human-induced habitat destruction and noise pollution and warns that by smothering the earth’s many voices, we’re not only imperiling species but losing our connection to the natural world. But by paying attention to sounds both natural and human-created, we can understand what’s at stake — and mobilize to protect it. Haskell joins to share more about our world’s sonic diversity and guide us in listening to it.


David George Haskell, author, “Sounds Wild and Broken: Sonic Marvels, Evolution’s Creativity and the Crisis of Sensory Extinction”; William R. Kenan Jr. Professor of Biology and Environmental Studies, The University of the South

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