Latin America has a tradition of socially engaged artists. In Mexico, since the muralist movement of the 1920s, artists have shown a preoccupation for denouncing social issues in their works. In this article, we propose the concept of Paisaje sonoro social [socially engaged soundscapes], an approach to the composition of sound art that aims to raise awareness about specific social issues experienced in Mexican society. Through the combination of oral testimony, soundscapes (both real and imagined), and instrumental and electroacoustic music, Paisaje sonoro social aims to provide a direct communication to the listener in order to draw attention to social issues such as child exploitation, migration, poor working conditions for factory workers, poverty, and children working in the touristic industry.
Through the analysis of a series of six works we argue that, although Paisaje sonoro social shares features of other genres, such as soundscape composition, acousmatic storytelling, and documental sonoro [radio feature] it has fundamental differences