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Instrumental intentionality: an exploration of mediated intentionality in musical improvisation.

Davis, T., 2019. Instrumental intentionality: an exploration of mediated intentionality in musical improvisation. International Journal of Performance Arts and Digital Media, 15 (1), 70-83.

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DOI: 10.1080/14794713.2018.1545209


This paper examines the musician/instrument relationship through exploring notions of mediated intentionality. Ihde’s [1990. Technology and the Lifeworld. Bloomington: Indiana University Press] writings are taken as a starting point for examining these human– technology relationships with a particular focus on the intentionality of the human-instrument construction. Notions of instruments as mediators of intentionality are then examined from a variety of standpoints found in improvisational practice, with a focus on different conceptions of mediation, instrumental resistance and instrumental agency. Verbeek’s [2008. “Cyborg Intentionality: Rethinking the Phenomenology of Human– Technology Relations.” Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 7: 387–395] conception of Cyborg Intentionality is explored as one way to extend these notions within a post-phenomenological posthuman framework. To help contextualise this discussion the author presents a performance system, the Feral Cello, whose design has been informed by the above discussion. Verbeek’s hybrid and composition notions of intentionality are used as a framework for reflection upon the performance system.

Item Type:Article
Uncontrolled Keywords:Improvisation; intentionality; resistance; musician/ instrument relationship
Group:Faculty of Science & Technology
ID Code:31545
Deposited By: Symplectic RT2
Deposited On:11 Dec 2018 11:16
Last Modified:14 Mar 2022 14:13


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