Episode 1

Listen in pop-out player

The author and journalist Andrew Martin has phonophobic traits, which call for some extreme actions:

"So I went out to buy my first box of earplugs. I must have bought... well, about a box a month ever since. The best ones are made of wax; they're covered in cotton wool and they're about the size of aniseed balls. You get twelve in a box. Soon I know I'd become addicted to them. I had also, by then, become addicted to the use at night of electrical fans for the creation of 'white noise'. I kept them going all night long..."

In the first of five essays, author Andrew Martin lays bare his life as a 'phonophobic'. How to cope with jarring sounds in the modern world? And is there an another way to live without the daily cacophony?

Producer Duncan Minshull

First broadcast in January 2012.

Release date:

Available now

15 minutes

Last on

Mon 4 Mar 2013 22:45

The Book that Changed Me

The Book that Changed Me

Five figures from the arts and science introduce books that changed their lives and work.

Download The Essay

The Essay podcast

Download all the episodes from the series and listen at your leisure.

Listen Online First

The Essay Online First

Hear all five episodes of the latest episodes of the Essay before they're broadcast