Vox Media: Sound, "under language," and "narrative archaeology" in/as Literature

  • John F. Barber Washington State University Vancouver


This essay describes (re)combining and/or (re)conceptualizing sound artifacts from two pioneering works of electronic literature no longer readily available to create a new, sound-based narrative for each work. The techne proposed promotes broader opportunities for conceptualizing and creating literary artifacts characterized by audibility of text, sound as text and meaning, and heightened awareness of the author’s and/or speaker’s voice(s) in the text. This approach may help challenge the past invisibility of voice in literature and promote practices more rewarding than simulacra, description, or transcription. Vox Media. Sound in and/or as literature.


sound, remix, under language, sound narratives, sound files, computer code, narrative archaeology, hearing, listening, aural/oral storytelling

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Author Biography

John F. Barber, Washington State University Vancouver

John F. Barber, Ph.D. teaches in The Creative Media & Digital Culture program at Washington State University Vancouver. His scholarship, teaching, and creative endeavors focus on intersections among Digital Humanities, computer technology, and media art. Of particular interest are digital archiving / curation and sound+radio art. He developed and maintains Radio Nouspace (www.radionouspace.net), a curated listening gallery/virtual museum for sound featuring historical and experimental radio+audio drama, radio+sound art, sound poetry, and experimental music. His radio+sound art work has been broadcast internationally, and featured in juried exhibitions in America, Canada, Germany, Macedonia, Northern Ireland, and Portugal. Barber also developed and curates Brautigan Bibliography and Archive (www.brautigan.net), an online, interactive information structure known as the preeminent resource on the life and writings of American author Richard Brautigan. Richard Brautigan: An Annotated Bibliography (McFarland, 1990) and Richard Brautigan: Essays on the Writings and Life (McFarland, 2007) are offshoots of this work. Barber has contributed essays regarding Brautigan to Postwar Literature 1945-1970: Research Guide to American Literature, Encyclopedia of Beat Literature, and international literary journals.


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How to Cite
BARBER, John F.. Vox Media: Sound, "under language," and "narrative archaeology" in/as Literature. MATLIT: Materialities of Literature, [S.l.], v. 5, n. 1, p. 11-26, dec. 2017. ISSN 2182-8830. Available at: <http://impactum-journals.uc.pt/matlit/article/view/3777>. Date accessed: 20 feb. 2018. doi: https://doi.org/10.14195/2182-8830.
Secção Temática | Thematic Section


sound; remix; under language; sound narratives; aural/oral storytelling; sound files, computer code; sound based; narrative archaeology