Stephen Sullivan is a PhD candidate in the department of Anthropology at Northwestern University and SAR’s 2020 Mellon fellow.
What does gentrification sound like? Previous scholarship tends to analyze the social and material processes of gentrification separately. Popular studies of urban sound, meanwhile, focus narrowly on noise complaints, without attention to the political and historical conditions they reflect. Sullivan’s dissertation research instead uses the concept of “soundscape” to offer a more integrated, on-the-ground account of gentrification and its discontents. During this talk, Sullivan will present preliminary findings from ethnographic fieldwork he conducted over the past year in a working-class, gentrifying Brooklyn neighborhood. Amid rapid demographic and social change, proposed changes to housing and land policy by elected officials, and heightened forms of policing under city leadership, sound in general and noise in particular have become sites of neighborhood contestation and dissent.
This event is part of the 2020 fall scholar colloquia series.
Each year, incoming resident scholars introduce their work to the SAR community through a presentation and Q&A. This year’s talks are hosted online and continue to be free and open to the public. Registration is required.