Wednesday, February 13, 2013

A mind of Voices

For this I listened to the "Hearing Voices" podcast from ABC Radio National. This podcast was about the ideas of hearing voices and people who do. This podcast throws about some interesting stats about something not heard about much, such as 10 percent of the population hears voices to varying degrees. They bring in information about different peoples approaches to dealing with voices. There was a great deal of promotion for the Hearing Voices Network, an organization to help people meet others and gain some normalization.
This podcast focused on hearing of a more internal force. Through the style of interview and narrative they laid out a nice spread of information and ideas on their topic of voice hearing. The podcast also had people in the field of study of hearing voices explain some approaches and again promotion of the Hearing Voices Network and techniques that they suggest.  In this case technology is best used to connect people with each other. Since technology isn't really a cure in this case it's used as a tool so that people can share their own experiences and advice with others.
Most of this is psychology and in a lesser sense biology. So from a psychological stand point they explored mostly those afflicted by voices causing some distress of the person. They also mentioned that many people embrace and have positive experiences. For this I'd say that they do go beyond current documentation because they're utilizing first person experiences and interviewing and asking things that haven't been recorded down as fact.
They began this podcast with a poem reading. Following a solo female narrators voice came through and was the main person asking and interviewing. The narrators voice is a constant and is accompanied by previous interview snippets and what sounds to be live interview questions. The narrator was our go between on one sonorous object to the next.
I feel the largest advantage they didn't take was in the fact they were exploring voices in the head and were only voices. I feel they could have taken advantage of this fact in giving possible examples based on how people have possibly experienced events. I also feel the large difference in quality of sound at times became distracting. I think a consistency in sound should have been taken into account when doing the recordings. Lastly I think I would have brought in a more balanced interview audience of both good and bad. They tended to focus on dealing with the bad, and while the information they gave was important and useful I feel there should still have been a balance. They mentioned how useful people who had positive experiences were in helping others with less positive experiences. By doing so I had hoped to hear from some of those people.

1 comment:

Trace said...

Ethan, you emphasize some of the more important features of this podcast. I think you could get more mileage out of comparing the value of contrasting professional opinion on the subject and the use of first-hand experience. This could be particularly valuable when you observe the way technology is being used as a platform to create a community of people who share these experiences. I think the final point about how this could have been improved with more balanced accounts in terms of the range of hearing voices is a good point. What do you think might slant reportage to coverage of the negative over the positive? I've also always wondered why some effort wasn't made to sonically simulate the experience of hearing voices.