LANGUAGE AS SOUND
AS SOUND MATERIAL
In these strange times, engagement with the natural environment has
been highlighted as a precious part of our ability to survive, make
sense of the world around and within us, and mediate our health at all
levels of being. The importance of the natural environment’s place has
been foregrounded, as has our impact on it. So too, has our ability to
redress the balance when – motivated to do so.
For institutions whose business is engagement with this environment,
it may be an opportune moment to ask questions of critical reflexivity.
How are NTNU’s discourses shaping the way in which it engages with
the natural environment? Do these discourses affect the way in which its
stakeholders are perceived? What are the limits of NTNU’s episteme, and
how might these be identified, to illuminate the ways in which
stakeholders are ‘produced’ by discourse?
How might we apply the imaginary, as a sensory modality, to enliven
and enchant knowledge-making, rather than aim simply at explanation?
Could the inclusion of a fuller range of voices – not only from other
disciplines and external stakeholders but from within our
non-professional selves – add a lyrical dimension to saltwater worlds,
or renew our reverence for the natural environment? Could these
enchantments leak into our disciplinary philosophies, daily working
habits, informal opinions or formal communications to improve research
outputs in some way?
How do different research centres, departments or individuals at NTNU
reinforce language use? How dimensional are their vocabularies? Do
these practices change with context, audience, or over time? Are they
static? How might we make ourselves more sensitive to the contours,
textures and patterns in our language? How may we enrich the ways in
which we use language, by widening the semantic net beyond our own
disciplines? From morphemes to gestalt verbal units, what changes can be
affected? How can we develop individual or collective practices for
magnifying and demagnifying our field of attention, with respect to our