Published December 22, 2022 | Version v1
Conference paper Open

Learning Through Listening: An Autoethnographic Approach

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From the point-of-audition, we ask: what interferes with listening? Listening in/to the world from my standpoint, I bring in personal experience and knowledge. Autoethnographic research allows us to connect with the bigger picture and engage with our surroundings. Echoing Barad, I argue that researchers are part of the physical world rather than observers looking at the world (2007, 376). Thus, knowing constitutes a “physical practice of engagement” (Barad, 2007, 342). By including this new materialist perspective, I consider non-human forms of agency in autoethnographic research, thereby shifting the focus on relational networks rather than focusing solely on human action.
With an emphasis on the act of listening, I propose the adoption of the “listener-as-student” stance (McRae, 2012). Listening critically in/to the world, into ourselves and towards others, we gain knowledge. In terms of artistic research, it makes sense to investigate the self in order to reveal an internal individual view of the creative process. Self-reflection enables awareness of misconceptions, expectations, and prejudices that interfere with listening and learning. We are able to form new understandings by balancing information acquired from within and without.
Following research previously conducted as part of the project On the Fragility of Sounds hosted at the University of Music and Performing Arts Graz, I will posit an example of an autoethnographic approach towards listening: I will present how the composer Pia Palme engages with listening and autoethnography in her artistic research process.

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Conference paper: 10.5281/zenodo.7274292 (DOI)