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Learning to make noise: toward a process model of artistic practice within experimental music scenes

Woods, Peter J.



Emerging at the intersection of industrial, punk, electronic music, and avant-garde jazz, noise music represents a niche subgenre reliant on loud, discordant, and arhythmic sounds to make music. Yet despite its place within the (broadly defined) experimental music tradition, research into experimental music education has largely overlooked the genre. In response, I explore noise music through the lens of situated learning theory by addressing the following research question: how do noise musicians develop their artistic practice? To do so, I present findings from a comparative case study centered on two intertwined experimental music concert and workshop series focused on noise music. I begin by analyzing interview data from seventeen featured artists to construct a process model of artistic practice shared between musicians. I then employ bidirectional artifact analysis to trace the development of one novice participant in the series through this model. In turn, these findings not only illuminate how experimental musicians learn within informal settings but provide a potential model of learning for informal learning communities more broadly. This study also holds implications for situated learning theory by asserting the influence of non-anthropocentric actors within communities of practice.


Woods, P. J. (2022). Learning to make noise: toward a process model of artistic practice within experimental music scenes. Mind, Culture, and Activity, 29(2), 169-185.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Jun 28, 2022
Online Publication Date Jul 15, 2022
Publication Date Apr 3, 2022
Deposit Date Mar 13, 2023
Publicly Available Date Mar 15, 2023
Journal Mind, Culture, and Activity
Print ISSN 1074-9039
Electronic ISSN 1532-7884
Publisher Routledge
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 29
Issue 2
Pages 169-185
Keywords Cognitive Neuroscience; Anthropology; Developmental and Educational Psychology; Education; Language and Linguistics; Cultural Studies; Social Psychology
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