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Garnette Cadogan: “Walking to New Sounds”
February 22, 2018 @ 12:00 amFree
A talk by Garnette Cadogan, Visiting Scholar in the Department of Urban Studies and Planning (DUSP)
How do the public spaces we move in shape us and help determine the kind of people we want to become? We know more and more about the world around us, thanks to a deluge of data, but blind spots abound–too often, we remain unaware of far too people who are right before us. Yet close attention to the way we move in public space–specifically, the freedom to walk and, more so, the various limitations and obstacles that hamper that freedom–can be a litmus test for the health and vitality our public spaces. Attention to an act so simple and mundane as walking can illuminate our understanding of some of our most contentious issues about public space–for instance, the role and place of Confederate monuments. To explore the simple act of putting one foot in front of the other, then, is to examine our attempts to create an open and pluralistic public space.
This talk will be a invitation, aided by the voices of poets, essayists, novelists, stand-up comedians, and other close noticers of our world, to be better listeners in public space. And, in listening, to offer a richer public discourse. “Let the new sound in our streets be the patient sound of your discourse,” Richard Wilbur encouraged. He was wise to do so. We live in embattled times with an urgent demand that we understand those around us. What, then, if we began to think of our public spaces as teachers? Places that instruct us how to be attentive to the hidden, the neglected, the repressed? Places, indeed, in which we discover our capacity to listen and create new sounds.
This discussion will be accessible to a general audience. We ask that you register here.