In Zakes Mda's novel The Whale Caller, the protagonist establishes an intimate relationship with a whale by playing music on a horn. This article considers Mda's novel alongside ethnographic work with the book's “real-world” referent in Hermanus, South Africa. What do whales hear when they hear us? Are whales musical creatures? Deploying an eclectic method, I examine possible answers to these questions in an effort to think about music and sound beyond the human. In our era of ecological destruction and anti-Black violence, human-animal interactions offer important insights into what we have in common and how we share the earth.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Cultural Studies