19 May 2021 2:30pm - 4:00pm ONLINE SESSION (UK Time)


This is an online event hosted via Zoom. To attend please contact Bettina Varwing.


Anurag Agarwal (University of Cambridge)

Melissa Van Drie (Independent Researcher)


David Trippett (University of Cambridge)



This roundtable brings together scholars from the humanities and sciences to discuss practices of medical and diagnostic listening. In what ways does medical listening constitute a special aural skill distinct from everyday practices of listening? How have Western pedagogies and technologies of auscultation developed over time, and where do current developments such the AI stethoscope leave the role of the human ear or touch in evaluating a patient's condition? More broadly, what might historians and enigneers learn from each other in this kind of cross-disciplinary dialogue?


About the Speakers

Anurag is the head of the Acoustics lab in the Engineering Department at the University of Cambridge. He is a Reader in Acoustics and Biomedical Technology, Dhruv Sawhney Fellow of Emmanuel College, Fellow of Cambridge Philosophical Society and the CEO of Biophonics Limited. He is an Enterprise Champion and Diversity Champion for the School of Technology. His research interests are in the field of acoustics and aerodynamics of aerospace, domestic appliances and biomedical applications. His collaborators include Rolls-Royce, General Electric, Boeing, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, JCB, Dyson, and Addenbrookes, Papworth, Imperial, Birmingham, Guy’s and St Thomas, King’s and John Radcliffe Hospitals.

Melissa Van Drie is a historian and arts practitioner based in Copenhagen. She writes cultural histories of listening and sound media (19th-21st Centuries). After an M.A. in Musicology (NYU), her Ph.D. (Theatre, Sorbonne-Paris 3) explored the roles of sonic epistemologies and sound devices (phonograph, telephone, théâtrophone, stethoscope) in changing performance practices, stages and aesthetics of late 19th-century French theatre. During fellowships at Maastricht University and Cambridge, she published on auscultation and sensory knowledge in medicine in Senses and Society, Sound Studies Journal, Gesnerus. During her most recent Marie Sklodowska-Curie Fellowship (Copenhagen University), her Sound Delicious Project examined what a sonic perspective reveals about the human and non-human relationships that make up food.



An event organised by Auralities Research Network
Administrative assistance: networks@crassh.cam.ac.uk 

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