Welcome to the online version of Hearing Voices: suffering, inspiration and the everyday, the world’s first exhibition to explore voice-hearing from personal, scientific, cultural, literary and theological perspectives.
Our exhibition is the result of a collaboration between Durham University’s Palace Green Library and Hearing the Voice – a large interdisciplinary study of voice-hearing funded by the Wellcome Trust. It was produced in close partnership with voice-hearers, their families and allies, who were involved in the project as contributing artists, co-curators and advisors.
This website contains images of the key displays, podcasts, interactive presentations and useful resources for anyone with an interest in hearing voices and other unusual experiences.
You can join in the conversation around the exhibition on social media with the hashtag #HearingVoicesDU.
Find out more about the themes of the exhibition in this introductory audio feature and listen to what people who’ve seen it think.
Podcasts produced by Andrea Rangecroft for Hearing the Voice.
Hearing a voice in the absence of any speaker is one of the most unusual, complex, and mysterious aspects of human experience. Typically regarded as a symptom of severe mental disorders such as schizophrenia, voice-hearing is increasingly recognized as an important part of many people’s lives and experience, as well as a phenomenon that has had profound significance, not only for individuals, but across communities, cultures, and history.
From the revelatory and inspirational voices of medieval mystics to those of imaginary friends in childhood, and from the inner voices of writers as they craft their characters to the stories of people from the international Hearing Voices Movement, the exhibition explores the complexity and diversity of the experience and interpretation of voice-hearing.
This exhibition draws on the work of Hearing the Voice, a large interdisciplinary study of voice-hearing based at Durham University and funded by the Wellcome Trust.
Click on the buttons below to view the exhibition displays and explore voice-hearing from personal, clinical, literary, historical and theological perspectives.
Hearing Voices: suffering, inspiration and the everyday was on display in the Dessyson Stoddart Durham University Galleries at Palace Green Library in Durham, UK from 5 November 2016 to 26 February 2017. It was accompanied by an extensive linked programme of public lectures and symposia, experiential and immersive audio performances, film screenings and discussion events for voice-hearers, their families and allies.
We are currently developing plans to tour an adapted version of the exhibition to conventional galleries and non-conventional gallery spaces such as schools, hospitals, community centres, libraries and conferences.
To find out where the exhibition is headed next, please see the map towards the bottom of this page. To bring the exhibition to a place near you or make a suggestion for a suitable venue, please get in touch with us. We would love to hear your ideas!
Palace Green Library, Durham, DH1 3RN, United Kingdom
Dennyson Stoddart and Durham University Galleries
Palace Green Library
For queries about Hearing Voices: suffering, inspiration and the everyday please contact Hearing the Voice.
For information about Palace Green Library, please see the library website.