Invasion of the pod people

If you just can’t get enough Historiann, or you’ll click on anything having to do with women’s and gender history, borderlands history, Native American history, or colonial North American history, or you’re just reallyreally bored, you can check out “Inroads:  Episode #2,” the podcast that graduate student Justin Carroll made of my talk at the CIC-American Indian Studies Consortium at Michigan State University earlier this month.  (At least you can find out what I sound like, if not what I look like!)  Those of you who are technologically adept can probably figure out how to put it on your i-Pods so that you can take me with you on your jog or trip to the gym.  (And who wouldn’t love working out to a discussion of religious education, self-mortification, and artistic expression among women in Wabanakia and Quebec in the eighteenth century?  Talk about “Sweatin’ to the Oldies!”)

The AISC has other podcasts that might be of interest to many of you:  Carroll also has posted a podcast of “From Ph.D. to Professor,” in which three MSU faculty members (Heather Howard, Susan Applegate Krouse, and Kimberli Lee) plus Susan Lobo of the University of Arizona discuss their professional development and the process of publishing their books.  Also, in “Inroads:  Episode #1,” Joseph Stahlman discusses his research in Anthropology at Indiana University.

Here’s a question I’ve always had about the audio world:  why don’t our voices sound the same in recordings as they sound in our head?  I’m always surprised by how young and high-pitched my voice sounds.  I sound much lower-pitched and more authoritative in my imagination than I do on my voicemail or answering machine.  I was interviewed for a program for BBC4 a few years ago, and I was amazed at how sonorous and rich they made my voice.  They must have a documentarian version of Auto-Tune that makes everyone they interview sound like Kathleen Turner or James Earl Jones.

0 thoughts on “Invasion of the pod people

  1. “Sweatin’ to the Oldies” — You crack me up. You sound like Kathleen Turner in my head, so I think I will skip the podcast in order to preserve the illusion. And remember: I look just like Asta in The Thin Man movies, though I, too, am 50 feet tall.


  2. I believe the difference in the sound of one’s own voice on tape differs from how it sounds in real life because one’s voice travels to one’s own eardrums primarily through the dense medium (or media?) of one’s head, resulting in a comparatively richer, lower sound than when it passes through only the attenuated medium of the air (as when we hear it on tape, for example).

    Not too much of a mansplanation, I hope.


  3. Tom–not at all. I figured it must have something to do with the conductivity of bones and tissue versus air. It’s just that the sound seems dramatically different!

    I still wish I sounded like the voice in my head. (Although sometimes that voice sounds sharper, whereas the air voice softens that a bit. Sometimes.)


  4. No, I mean that your voice works well with audio. Some people sound ridiculous on tape, but you are not one of them. Hearing oneself speaking over the air is kind of awkward (at least for me when I’ve done it!), but you have the voice to pull it off.


  5. Cool podcast, once I got my pod to actually start casting it. You sound just like Historiann, of my memory. I think the BBC has some audio technology– informally called by its techies “Murrow”–that makes everyone sound as though they’re covering the Blitz, ducking and juking between incoming V-1s and V-2s. It was developed in conjunction with (re)-opening the Churchill War Rooms some years back. Or maybe it was the anniversary special on the Cavern Club in Liverpool.

    My three fave sound-bytes: “Wabenakified,” scholars “running wild” and finding “too many Middle Grounds” back in the ’90s (ay-men), plus, of course, the “average enlisted schmoe…”


  6. Congratulations, Historiann, you sound the way a scholar should. Now me, I sound like Beaver’s brother Wally–which I means I will go a very long way never to hear or watch a recorded version of myself speak.


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