ShortCuts: Short stories about how literature sounds

Released monthly on The SpokenWeb Podcast feed, ShortCuts minisodes take listeners on a deep dive – via short, sonic cuts – into the audio collections of SpokenWeb.

Developed from ShortCuts blog posts on SPOKENWEBLOG, ShortCuts minisodes consist of original audio content produced for The SpokenWeb Podcast. Audio clips are short – ranging from background noise to a short poem – accompanied by audio commentary that explores what was so surprising, perplexing, moving, delightful, and/or memorable about hearing that archival sound.

About 5-10 minutes, the minisodes are based on an audio clip usually no more than 3 minutes in length.

The practices of cutting and splicing invoked by the title ShortCuts recall the media history of the analogue recordings within SpokenWeb’s collections, as does the visual logo for ShortCuts designed by SpokenWeb RA Manami Izawa.

By creating a digital space informed by analogue techniques of making, ShortCuts minisodes ask: what does it mean and what is possible (technologically, phenomenologically, ethically, poetically) to cut and splice digitally? What kinds of new stories and audio-criticism can be produced through these short archival clips?

ShortCuts minisodes are produced by Katherine McLeod, hosted by Hannah McGregor, and mixed and mastered by Stacey Copeland.


ShortCuts 2.1

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October 19, 2020

Introducing ShortCuts

EPISODE SUMMARY Welcome to ShortCuts. To kick off the new miniseries season, Katherine invites us into an audio remix of short clips from deep in the archive to consider: what does it mean and what is possible (technologically, phenomenologically, ethically, poetically) to cut and splice digitally? What kinds of new stories and audio-criticism can be […]

ShortCuts 1.7

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July 20, 2020

Audio of the Month – As Though Her Voice is Dancing

EPISODE SUMMARY In episode 7 of The SpokenWeb Podcast (“The Voice is Intact”), producer Hannah McGregor and guest Jen Sookfong Lee listen together to Gwendolyn MacEwen reading the poem “The Zoo” (recorded in Montreal, 1966). As we listen to them listening on the podcast, we hear a gasp and even an exclamation: “Melodious!” What was […]

ShortCuts 1.6

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June 15, 2020

Audio of the Month – From Poetic Surveillance to an Avant-Garde Dinner Fit for a Queen

EPISODE SUMMARY This month we bring you a very special guest curator edition of SpokenWeb’s Audio of the Month. In this minisode, Katherine McLeod is joined by SpokenWeb researcher and postdoctoral fellow Mathieu Aubin for a glimpse into the life and work of Canadian poet bill bissett – from poetic surveillance to an avant-garde dinner […]

ShortCuts 1.5

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May 18, 2020

Audio of the Month – Then and Now

EPISODE SUMMARY This month our SpokenWeb minisode features Canadian poet Daphne Marlatt reading “Lagoon” from Vancouver Poems (1972), a deeply local collection that she had not yet published when this reading took place at Sir George Williams University (now Concordia) in Montreal. When listening to Marlatt reading “Lagoon,” we can hear the many futures of […]

ShortCuts 1.4

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April 20, 2020

Audio of the Month – Dorothy Livesay listening to the radio

EPISODE SUMMARY In this Audio of the Month minisode Katherine Mcleod features recordings of poet Dorothy Livesay. We hear Livesay read selections of her work including “Bartok and the Geranium,” a poem that is often anthologized and, in fact, you may have studied it in a course on Canadian poetry. But do you know how […]

ShortCuts 1.3

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March 16, 2020

Audio of the Month – Where does the reading begin?

EPISODE SUMMARY This month our SpokenWeb minisode features Kaie Kellough reading at The Words and Music Show, Nov 20, 2016. As Kellough starts to introduce his reading, a pre-recorded voice slowly mixes with his live words. Where, then, does the introduction end, and where does the reading begin? EPISODE NOTES Each month on alternate fortnights […]

ShortCuts 1.2

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February 17, 2020

Audio of the Month – Improvising at a Poetry Reading

EPISODE SUMMARY As we come to the end of a holiday long weekend here in Canada, it’s time for a new episode of SpokenWeb’s Audio of The Month: ‘mini’ stories about how literature sounds. This month Katherine shares a recording of Canadian poet Maxine Gadd reading “Shore Animals” with improvised flute by Richard Sommer (1972). […]

ShortCuts 1.1

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January 20, 2020

Audio of the Month – Daryl Hine’s Point Grey

EPISODE SUMMARY Welcome to our first SpokenWeb minisode. Each month on alternate fortnights (that’s every second week following the monthly spokenweb podcast episode) – join Hannah McGregor, and minisode host and curator Katherine McLeod for SpokenWeb’s Audio of Month mini series. This month Katherine shares a recording of Canadian poet Daryl Hine reading “Point Grey” […]

ShortCuts Credits

Katherine McLeod (producer) researches archives, performance, and poetry. She has co-edited the collection CanLit Across Media: Unarchiving the Literary Event (with Jason Camlot, McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2019). She is writing a monograph (under contract with Wilfrid Laurier University Press) that is a feminist listening to recordings of women poets reading on CBC Radio. She is an affiliated researcher with SpokenWeb and she is the 2020-2021 Researcher-in-Residence at the Concordia University Library.

Manami Izawa (graphic design) is an undergraduate student at Concordia University, pursuing her passion for industrial design. She has professional experience in education and graphic design. Her goal is to help create a better user experience with her background in B.A. of Linguistics and her certificate of Pedagogy and Graphic Design.

Hannah McGregor (host) is an Assistant Professor of Publishing at Simon Fraser University, where her research focuses on podcasting as scholarly communication, systemic barriers to access in the Canadian publishing industry, and magazines as middlebrow media. She is the co-creator of Witch, Please, a feminist podcast on the Harry Potter world, and the creator of the podcast Secret Feminist Agenda. She is also the co-editor of the book Refuse: CanLit in Ruins (Book*hug 2018).

Stacey Copeland (supervising producer) oversees development and production of The Spokenweb Podcast. She is a Joseph-Armand Bombardier Ph.D. candidate in Communication at Simon Fraser University in Vancouver, Canada. Her current research focuses on radio and podcasting, cultural sound studies, queer cultural history and gender studies.