Neanderthal Sound

When I first started reading the Sound article that details the history of sound and sound effects, I was fascinated by what was written about the drawings of the cave walls of the Neanderthals some 30,000 years ago. Most interesting to me was the theory that in these caves and underground passages, you were meant to focus more on the sounds rather than the images. Ethnographer Iegor Reznikoff studied the caves and analyzed their echoes and reverberations. He determined that all of the cave drawings were all at the “most acoustically interesting parts of the caves” (Steven Johnson, 88). Although very interesting, and heavily supported by scientific evidence, I am still quite dubious that the Neanderthals put these paintings there on purpose. I find it very hard to believe that they went around to different parts of the caves, made noises, kept track of which spots were the most “acoustically interesting” and painted in only those areas. I think that these caves were “acoustically interesting” in almost every part, and it just so happened that these drawings were placed in the most acoustically interesting parts. I think it is an interesting coincidence, but I find it hard to accept as a theory.

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