The pursuit of silence is dissimilar from other pursuits in that it begins with a surrender of the chase, the abandonment of efforts to impose our will and vision on the world. (George Prochnik)
The subtitle of George Prochnik’s latest book is “Listening for Meaning in a World of Noise”.
“Between iPods, music-blasting restaurants, earsplitting sports stadiums, and endless air and road traffic, the place for quiet in our lives grows smaller by the day. In Pursuit of Silence gives context to our increasingly desperate sense that noise pollution is, in a very real way, an environmental catastrophe. Listening to doctors, neuroscientists, acoustical engineers, monks, activists, educators, marketers, and aggrieved citizens, George Prochnik examines why we began to be so loud as a society, and what it is that gets lost when we can no longer find quiet. He shows us the benefits of decluttering our sonic world.” (from the book description on Amazon)
“As we all know, absolute silence is impossible – it’s the ending of all vibrations, total death,” states Prochnik.
“Rather than just being against noise and telling people who have no experience of silence, ‘be quiet,’ people who at this point literally don’t know what the [word] means, we’ve got to start showing them what it means to be for silence,” Prochnik told us. “We’ve got to give them the space to do it and it’s got to be experiential.”