Bridget Herlihy

Doctor of Philosophy
Study Completed: 2019
Massey Business School


Thesis Title
Re-Tuning the mind's ear: An anonymous history of acoustic prosthetic technologies for the ear

Read article at Massey Research Online: MRO icon

Sound is an integral part of our everyday experience. The sonic texture of the world is constantly transforming through the development of acoustic technologies that facilitate experiences of sound that have not previously been possible. This is particularly evident through hearing aids and headphones. Yet despite the ubiquity of these devices their phenomenological effects upon the perception of acoustic space has not been widely examined. Miss Herlihy traced the evolution of acoustic prosthetics in key areas of innovation and influence. She found that across history these devices modified how the user perceived acoustic space, and in some cases enabled the experience of hybridised forms of auditory space. In several instances, it was also found that the use of prosthetics for the ear have become paradoxical. Her research provides valuable insight into the historical phenomenological effects of acoustic prosthetic technologies, specifically how they alter users' perception of the world.

Associate Professor Margaret Brunton
Dr Pansy Duncan

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