Academic Armchair – Dr Michael Bull
After navigating my way through the overly confusing corridors of Silverstone, I find myself in the presence of Dr Michael Bull.
The Media and Film Studies academic has books and papers filling up his desk and had he not been in the room I may well have looked for one of my essays and changed the mark to something slightly higher.
Michael has been at Sussex University for twelve years, and having him as a tutor myself, his experience and wisdom of his subject is clear to see.
This is reflected in the work he is currently doing in several areas; he has a lot going on.
He is eager to discuss a book he is writing for the University of Illinois Press, all about the history of sound connections in the media, which will “cover everything from Hillsborough to 9/11”.
Further to this, he is also one of the founders of the European Sound Studies Association, which is bringing people from all areas of study to look at sound in its most interdisciplinary functions.
And if he wasn’t busy enough, in his spare time he is attending conferences in Milan and advising on the creation of the first sonic theme park.
Busy, busy man.
Michael entered academia through teaching in Further Education, but soon grew bored of it.
“The problem was that I was convinced that I could write better books than the ones I was teaching!” Join the club.
Whilst most of us can empathise with that, few actually put their money where there mouth is.
But Michael has gone on to earn a reputation as a heralded academic in his field.
However, Michael’s true passion lies in the art and music world.
Having studied Art at the University of Bristol, he went on to run a Jazz Club in London and, when asked who he would most like to go for a drink with (living or dead), he answers straight away;
“Janis Joplin. I’d take Janis Joplin to Ronnie Scotts”.
Expensive night, but I’m sure it would be worth it.
Although I was expecting him to say Oceana.