Henry Reese, 2015. Photograph: Nicole Davis

Henry Reese

Colonial Soundscapes: A Cultural History of Sound Recording in Australia, 1880–1930‘ (PhD in History, 2019).

‘Colonial Soundscapes’ is the first cultural history of the early phonograph and gramophone in Australian settler society. Drawing on recent work in sound studies and the history of sound, Henry Reese conceives of the ‘talking machine’ as part of the soundscape of colonial modernity in colonial and Federal Australia. He argues that national environmental/place attachment and modern listening practices developed together, with anthropological thought, popular culture, commercial life, intellectual elite discourse and everyday life all providing key sites for this transformation in Australian listening culture. Archival research was conducted across Australia, the UK and USA. Using an innovative methodology combining cultural history with business and economic history, media history and the history of anthropology, ‘Colonial Soundscapes’ makes a novel contribution to the history of Australian culture and a powerful argument about the importance of sound in any full account of the national past.

Supervisors: Professor David Goodman, Dr Julie Fedor

Read more of Henry’s work in the article: Protecting Australian Women from American Jazz