A technology of their own: anti-mass sentiment and the high-end audio community

Author: 
Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2009
Keywords: 
Audiophiles
Audio technology
Gender
Hobbyism
High-end audio
Golden ear
Community
Masculinity
Abstract: 

High-end audio hobbyism, or audiophilia, is a perplexing and often misunderstood culture with roots in the prehistory of audio recording technology. Certain audiophile characteristics, including an almost exclusively male constituency, elitist tendencies, and a privileging of knowledge, are as distinctive of audiophilia today as they were at its inception. It is the goal of this thesis to extract the origins of these traits and to explain how and why they have remained at the forefront of the culture despite, and sometimes as a consequence of, social and technological transformations. This project attempts to explain the origins of audiophilia while highlighting how the culture communicates, organizes, and defends itself against the perceived threats of feminization and massification. A discursive analysis of audiophile reactions to the introduction of digital audio is used as a case study to illustrate the intricate and often specious rationale of high-end audio culture.

Language: 
English
Document type: 
Thesis
Rights: 
Copyright remains with the author. The author granted permission for the file to be printed, but not for the text to be copied and pasted.
File(s): 
Supervisor(s): 
B
Department: 
School of Communication - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Thesis (M.A.)
Statistics: