Towards a wide approach to improvisation

In J. McGuirk, S. Ravn & S. Høffding (eds.), Improvisation: The Competence(s) of Not Being in Control. New York, NY, USA: (forthcoming)
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This paper pursues two main aims. First, it distinguishes two kinds of improvisation: expert and inexpert. Expert improvisation is a (usually artistic) practice that the agent consciously sets as their goal and is evaluated according to (usually artistic) standards of improvisation. Inexpert improvisation, by contrast, supports and structures the agent’s action as it moves them towards their (usually everyday life) goals and is evaluated on its success leading the agent to the achievement of those goals. The second aim is to describe inexpert improvisation as a robustly distributed affair, one that involves the ongoing integration of embodied practices with social and material resources within our surrounding environments. On the wide approach to improvisation fostered in this paper, inexpert improvisation is claimed to be our default way of inhabiting our world.
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Archival date: 2020-12-01
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