Jamming, learning: Analysing agency and structure in collective improvised musical practice

27. Oct 2015

By Lars Brinck

The on-going development of individual agency and the ability to act in the world are amongst the main tasks of education. But often, structural conditions invite us to separate or even juxtapose individual and collective perspectives on such development.

This contribution discusses whether an analytic concept of practice's 'aboutness' in a situated learning theoretical perspective could aid music teachers to recognize the resourcefulness of diversity, and embrace the unpredictability of on-going activities in the classroom. The author argues that such changing practices structure children's changing participation, conceptualized as learning, consequently developing their agency. Through an analysis of an empirical example of children jamming in the Danish music club of Kucheza, the author offers a set of new questions concerning how we might think about learning and music education in general.

Published in Finnish Journal of Music Education Vol 18, No.2 as part of Thorgersen, C., L. Brinck, C. Kvaal & K. Thorgersen:
'Musical activism towards equality among youths in Scandinavia' - read it HERE (p. 88-101, pdf-format).