Atmospheric Noise: The Indefinite Urbanism of Los Angeles

Atmospheric Noise: The Indefinite Urbanism of Los Angeles

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Author/Editor: Peterson, Marina
Publisher: Duke University Press
Date: 2021
Binding: Paperback
Condition: NEW

In Atmospheric Noise, Marina Peterson traces entanglements of environmental noise, atmosphere, sense, and matter that cohere in and through encounters with airport noise since the 1960s. Exploring spaces shaped by noise around Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), she shows how noise is a way of attuning toward the atmospheric: through noise we learn to listen to the sky and imagine the permeability of bodies and matter, sensing and conceiving that which is diffuse, indefinite, vague, and unformed. In her account, the "atmospheric" encompasses the physicality of the ephemeral, dynamic assemblages of matter as well as a logic of indeterminacy. It is audible as well as visible, heard as much as breathed.

Peterson develops a theory of "indefinite urbanism" to refer to marginalized spaces of the city where concrete meets sky, windows resonate with the whine of departing planes, and endangered butterflies live under flight paths. Offering a conceptualization of sound as immanent and non-objectified, she demonstrates ways in which noise is central to how we know, feel, and think atmospherically.