Andrea Lynn

Antioch University New England

Making Music with the Humpbacks of Mā‘alaea Bay


Andrea Lynn is a doctoral candidate at Antioch University researching ocean soundscapes to further positive ocean policy. She teaches compassion-centered courses at Florida Gulf Coast University where she works with the university's ROCK (Roots of Compassion and Kindness) Center to promote compassion, kindness, and empathy through education, action, and research.

Paper Abstract

That which dissolves humankind’s perceived separation from the more-than-human world is examined through this one simple question: What are they, the whales, saying? With a quick nod to Wittgenstein’s lion aphorism, motivations that prompt the asking of this question are investigated, as is the role understanding plays in kinship. Through music, interspecific entwinement is explored in consideration of consanguinity in collective memory and universal story. David Rothenberg was the maestro for this nautical journey, a human well-known for making music with a myriad of creatures, from whales to cicadas. His presence—his contemplations—take on the why question in exploration of the renewal of reciprocities, giving voice and meaning to shared sensory experiences. As author and biologist David Haskell so effectively communicated through his book, Sounds Wild and Broken: Sonic Marvels, Evolution's Creativity, and the Crisis of Sensory Extinction, we could hear our interconnectedness, if only we would listen.