Gold Winner

Silence

Photographer

Paul Christener

Category

Black & White Photography - Nature

Company

in-search-of-silence.art

Submission Group

Amateur

Year

2022

Country / Region

Switzerland

Silence



Have you ever wondered what silence sounds like? We’ve got used to the noise from honking cars, braking trains, people and their buzzing cellphones, loudspeaker announcements, arguments, laughter, and sirens. We are exposed to the noise of civilization even in remote places and almost around the clock. Complete silence does not exist—at least not in most parts of the world.



Noise is everywhere—it is this human-made noise that affects human health. The World Health Organization has studied the consequences of noise pollution on human health in the European Union. According to its Environmental Noise Guidelines for the European Region, “At least 100 million people in the European Union are affected by road traffic noise, and in western Europe at least 1.6 million healthy years of life are lost year by year as a result of road traffic.”



Studies worldwide indicate that high traffic noise levels weaken the immune system and significantly increase the risk of high blood pressure and heart attacks. Human-induced noise also affects animals and their natural behavior.



“Noise is not the most important problem in the world,” wrote Garret Keizer in his book The Unwanted Sound of Everything We Want. His conclusion: Noise is a weak issue because it affects the weak. He asks his readers to make a list of the people most likely to be affected by loud noises. According to him, “your list will include children, the elderly, the physically ill, racial minorities, neurological minorities, the poor, laborers, prisoners, or simply a human being of any description who happens to have less sound-emitting equipment than the person living next to her.”



Silent moments became a luxury in my life.

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