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New Wave Godard, Sound Practice and Conceptions of Noise

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New Wave Godard, Sound Practice and Conceptions of Noise

Beaton, Alyssa (2015) New Wave Godard, Sound Practice and Conceptions of Noise. Masters thesis, Concordia University.

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Abstract

The work of Modernist iconoclast Jean-Luc Godard is endlessly examined by scholars but rarely from a sound-centred perspective. However, the last thirty years has seen the growth of sound-centered research in cinema and media studies, challenging the authority of the visual in what is overwhelmingly an audio-visual medium. This thesis evaluates a selection of films with- in Godard’s New Wave corpus, spanning the years 1959-1967, to demonstrate that Godard’s treatment of sound challenges the spectator's understanding of film sound conventions in what becomes, over time, an explicitly political project. Understood chronologically, Godard’s work during this period is representative of a distinct transition from a place respecting conventional sound practices (including those favoured within nonfiction) to one reflecting a more analytical, politically inflected, anti-modernist position. This thesis highlights the ways in which Godard makes audible the materiality of the production process by way of unconventional editing tech- niques and the use of disparate recording styles. The result of these innovative approaches is an opening up of the cinematic soundscape to the sonic environments of Others and ‘othered sounds’ — sounds generally relegated to the background in a conventional film soundtrack, cate- gorized as disruptions and noise (or suppressed altogether) yet revelatory in terms of their power to give voice to the socio-cultural and political contexts of Godard’s work.

Divisions:Concordia University > Faculty of Fine Arts > Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema
Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Authors:Beaton, Alyssa
Institution:Concordia University
Degree Name:M.A.
Program:Film Studies
Date:May 2015
Thesis Supervisor(s):Salazkina, Masha
Keywords:film sound, noise, Jean-Luc Godard, Une femme est une femme, Dziga Vertov, Pierre Schaeffer, concrete music, music, avant-garde, John Cage, Masculin feminin, othered sound, New Wave
ID Code:980350
Deposited By: ALYSSA BEATON
Deposited On:27 Oct 2015 19:55
Last Modified:18 Jan 2018 17:51
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