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We read; not alone

Have you ever been able to escape the sound made by words when reading them? Is it possible for the brain to just process words as texts without producing the sound? Words are generally described as collection of letters which has a meaning. But when we read a word, do we really perceive them as just text to experience them? No. We read the words, which generates the sound in the mind, that creates the experience. Why does this really happen? Is it because every language started with sound and texts came later?

Sound as a wave in science, sensory stimuli in communication, music for the soul has always been fascinating. For just the fact that we have been listening for a longer period of time than speaking or reading, Sound has becomes an integral part of us. Sound being the basic element in language, has never escaped its role in our thought process. In fact, Sound remain as a guide in the translation of thoughts when communicating with others or self. In this Visual linguistic era, where there are words to read everywhere, Are people conscious of the sound in the head when they read?

These installations were an attempt to make people conscious of the sound, by words in their mind and understand the impact of it in their experience, by engaging them with words.

Is silent reading really silent? Are you hearing a voice in your mind when you are reading this? This phenomenon is called 'Sub-Vocalization'. It occurs only during the see-think, see-say translations. This sound helps in retaining the visual linguistic information (like words in text form ) in mind until it is translated into thoughts. During silent reading, the brain mimics the process of listening to someone speaking. Hence the sound, when people read silently.

Can you hear me? is to create a reading space by having the text on the wall and when they read the words,the same would be played back to them. The voice that is played back would sync with their voice in the mind and make them aware of its presence

We Read;not alone, is a sound installation to give an experience of the sound in the mind. This is a hallway of the gallery space with text at the start and end of it. The space will be in a way they would read the sentence in silence and as they walk along the hallway, they would experience the words being said out loud by different people giving them an opportunity to compare their version of it, which would in turn let them be aware of the voice in the mind.

A poem which would make people be aware of the voice in their mind when they read it silently.

Thanks to Prayas Abhinav, Arshad Pathan and Jignesh Khakhar

Copyright © 2017 Kavya D