by Arline L. Bronzaft, Ph.D., Board of Directors, GrowNYC, and Co-founder, The Quiet Coalition
Although my research and writings have focused on the dangers of noise to our mental and physical health, I have also written about the need for quiet and the joy of the natural sounds in our environment. In fact, my children’s book on noise and sound is titled “Listen to the Raindrops.”
I was delighted to learn more about the importance of natural sounds when John Grossman, co-author with Gordon Hempton of the book One Square Inch of Silence, spoke with me about my work on noise and learning. One Square Inch of Silence is not only about Gordon Hempton’s voyage across the country recording “the varied natural voices of the American landscape,” but in my opinion it is also a call to fight against the intrusive noises which not only prevent us from reconnecting with the natural sounds around us but also impede our health and well-being.
Thus, I was extremely pleased when Gordon contacted me last month to enlist my assistance in promoting his Quiet Parks International initiative. The mission of Quiet Parks International is the “preservation of Quiet for the benefit of all.”
I urge the readers of Silencity to learn more about Quiet Parks International and consider how you can contact key people in your cities to discuss the possibility of including your city in this initiative. If you would like further information, please leave a comment.
Dr. Arline Bronzaft is a researcher, writer, and consultant on the adverse effects of noise on mental and physical health. She is co-author of “Why Noise Matters,” author of “Listen to the Raindrops” (children’s book illustrated by Steven Parton), and has written extensively about noise in books, encyclopedias, academic journals, and the popular press. In addition, she is a Professor Emerita of the City University of New York and Board member of GrowNYC.