Listening through lines: mark making, sound and the hospital

Victoria L Bates*, Rebecka E Fleetwood-Smith*, Georgina Wilson*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)
48 Downloads (Pure)


This article explores sound in the hospital environment, using the drawing of lines to understand sound as process and agent in spaces of wellbeing. It builds on and extends the work of Tim Ingold on lines and sounds, exploring lines/sound in relation to the specific context of healthcare spaces. The article presents the methodology, process, and interpretation of lines from a workshop called ‘Listening to the Hospital’ as part of the research project ‘Sensing Spaces of Healthcare’. It focuses on engagement with recorded sounds from hospitals, showing that line-drawing might be productive in specific ways. The process aids an understanding of how sound shapes hospital ‘affective atmospheres’, and can encourage participants to engage in close listening. We argue that these routes to understanding are also potential routes to improving the wellbeing of people in hospitals, whether through hospital design or care. We also offer line-drawing as a valuable methodological and theoretical tool for scholars interested in embodied experiences of listening, of atmospheres and wellbeing, and of sound.
Original languageEnglish
Article number100099
JournalWellbeing, Space & Society
Early online date11 Aug 2022
Publication statusPublished - 21 Aug 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Thank you to all participants of our ‘Listening to the Hospital’ workshop. This work was funded by the UKRI Future Leaders Fellowship ‘Sensing Spaces of Healthcare: Rethinking the NHS Hospital ’ [ MR/S033793/1 ].

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022


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