Sonic Japan: Sounds of 3/11

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Japanese Communist Party Sound Truck at Shijo
This recording was taken in Shijo, the commercial and financial centre of Kyoto. In April 2015, there was a local election underway, and as noted in other posts individual candidates used sound trucks to advertise their campaigns. This was a stationary truck parked at a busy street corner which represented a political party rather than an individual candidate. The Japanese Communist Party is a small but still active organisation. Their stance, especially since 3/11, focuses on a nuclear free Japan and anti war policies. Their point of view conflicts directly with the then Prime Minister's policy of increasing Japan's military presence abroad. You can see their banners with slogans here such as 'Stop the restart of the nuclear power plants; Japan as a Zero Nuclear Nation' and 'Let us not send our young people to war!' (2015/04/05)
Buddhist monks in Protest
The sound of Buddhist monks beating drums along the sidewalk between the subway exit and the corner at of the entrance to the Prime Minister's Residence. As the researcher walks through the sound, the volume and intensity of the drums changes. (2013/10/11)
Anti Nuke protest speech edit
Edited speech by a Fukushima evacuee at an anti nuclear protest in front of the Prime Minister's residence. Here we hear her remember the sound of sirens the day of the earthquake (2013/10/11)

Latest posts

Thinking about recordings in the wind

Fri Jun 03 2016 by Tamara Kohn

This is a reflection on a problem that technology brings to the study of sound. The technology itself is sounded. Here is a wonderful example of this. The pine and the sounds of the windy landscape speak to the stories we've already told here about the...>>

南相馬奇跡の松 The Lone Pine Tree in a Post Disaster Soundscape in Minamisoma

Tue May 27 2014 by Carolyn Stevens and Tomohiro Matsuoka
Spontaneous recordings of disasters are often taken by accident, or by security cameras and recorders.   The CIs of this project have experienced many earthquakes in Japan, but to date have not had recorders in hand.>>

福島県飯館村のガイガーカウンター Geiger Counter (Dosimeter) near Iitate Village, Fukushima

Sat May 24 2014 by Carolyn Stevens and Tomohiro Matsuoka
At 2:56 pm on 11 March, 2011, Japan's northeastern coastline experienced a magnitude 9 earthquake, accompanied by a tsunami that hit a 500 kilometre stretch of the coast, and caused meltdowns and hydrogen explosions at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant. As of March 2014, the disasters had claimed 15,884 lives, with 6,148 injured and 2,633 people still missing (source).>>

永田町のデモ Friday night demonstrations near Nagatacho Station

Wed Apr 02 2014 by Carolyn Stevens
The following sounds were recorded during an evening protest in front of the Government offices in Kasumigaseki and  Nagatacho in central Tokyo. I began my sensory experience at the Anti Nuke Occupy Tent, which was located near exit A12 of the Kasumigaseki Station.>>