Ludic Dreaming - Dreams do not distort reality, so much as they are the reality of that distortion. Ludic Dreaming puts dreams in contact with electronic sounds, and digital devices more generally, in order to trace out the exotic topology of our post-everything society
Ludic Dreaming: How to Listen Away from Contemporary Technoculture, by David Cecchetto, Marc Couroux, Ted Hiebert, Eldritch Priest, Bloomsbury Academic, 2017.
read it at Google Books
Ludic Dreaming uses (sometimes fictional) dreams as a method for examining sound and contemporary technoculture's esoteric exchanges, refusing both the strictures of visually dominated logic and the celebratory tone that so often characterizes the “sonic turn.” Instead, through a series of eight quasi-analytical essays on the condition of listening, the book forwards a robust engagement with sounds (human and nonhuman alike) that leverages particularity in its full, radical singularity: what is a dream, after all, if not an incipient physics that isn't held to the scientific demand for repeatability? Thus, these studies declare their challenge to the conventions of argumentation and situate themselves at a threshold between theory and fiction, one that encourages reader and writer alike to make lateral connections between otherwise wildly incongruent subjects and states of affairs.
Put differently, Ludic Dreaming is a how-to book for listening away from the seeming fatality of contemporary technologies, which is to say, away from the seeming inevitability of late capitalistic nihilism.
“Dreams have always been ally to artists, allergy to art theorists. The Enlightenment has been burdened by a sun soaked conceit of waking life that suppresses sounds and the earthly orbits of sleep. Here is a bright eared collective who take the full play of light and shadow playfully and theory-ously. Sounds are wrenched from being physical acoustics of soundscapes ported into the head and bilaterally returned to an electrochemical brain domain where they discourse with the "prerogative of sleep" rather than a pejorative of unenlightenment. What's in the water in Canada? They should export it.” – Douglas Kahn
“Ludic Dreaming is provocative and adventurous in thought and style, offering a fresh approach to the thinking of sound, and a whimsical, highly productive, excursion from the field.” – Frances Dyson, Emeritus Professor in Cinema and Digital Media, University of California, Davis, USA
“The Occulture are the King Crimson of contemporary theoretical pataphysics; and the true inheritors of that special Canadian strain of smart, dark, technically-informed intellectual experimentation represented by McLuhan, Cronenberg, Gibson, and the Krokers. This new collaboration is a playfully serious, mind-bending tour of the current sonic mediascape, and some of the less obvious dream factories which compose it (including, and especially, ourselves). Ludic Dreaming resolders the scattered phantasmagoric fragments of what we might now consider, after reading this collection, the Disunited States of Oneirica.” – Dominic Pettman
“Dreams do not distort reality, so much as they are the reality of that distortion. Ludic Dreaming puts dreams in contact with electronic sounds, and digital devices more generally, in order to trace out the exotic topology of our post-everything society.” – Steven Shaviro
“This book is a piece of sound writing. Blurring the boundaries between dream, vision and physics, it stretches the reader's imagination into playful and oneiric realms of sonic materiality. A gift.” – Deborah A. Kapchan
“If contemporary networked capitalism is built on promissory hallucinations to which we wake in fright, then Ludic Dreaming is both sonic boom and boon for an altogether different reverie. Its essays hum with the aural ludicrousness of technocultural phenomena – from black holes that emit B flat frequencies to new generation ear buds that purport to (almost) playback the voice inside our heads. But in ludically tuning in to our nightmarish technologies, Cecchetto, Couroux, Hiebert and Priest [or The Occulture] concurrently compose a delirious counter-counterpoint accompaniment. And herein lies the remarkable and highly original contribution of this book to cultural theory, media and sound studies, and speculative thought. Affording listening a speculative creativity rather than mere receptive functionality, Ludic Dreaming performs an 'elsewhere' listening; a sounding of novel spectra into existence. You will never want to wake up from Ludic Dreaming!” – Anna Munster