Video games are becoming culturally dominant. But what does their popularity say about our contemporary society? This book explores video game culture, but in doing so, utilizes video games as a lens through which to understand contemporary social life.
Video games are becoming an increasingly central part of our cultural lives, impacting on various aspects of everyday life such as our consumption, communities, and identity formation. Drawing on new and original empirical data - including interviews with gamers, as well as key representatives from the video game industry, media, education, and cultural sector - Video Games as Culture not only considers contemporary video game culture, but also explores how video games provide important insights into the modern nature of digital and participatory culture, patterns of consumption and identity formation, late modernity, and contemporary political rationalities.
This book will appeal to undergraduate and postgraduate students, as well as postdoctoral researchers, interested in fields such Video Games, Sociology, and Media and Cultural Studies. It will also be useful for those interested in the wider role of culture, technology, and consumption in the transformation of society, identities, and communities.
Daniel Muriel is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow and Lecturer at the Leisure Studies Institute, University of Deusto, Bilbao, Spain. Garry Crawford is a Professor of Sociology at the University of Salford, Manchester, UK.
List of Illustrations Preface and Acknowledgements 1 Introduction: Contemporary Culture through the Lens of Video Games 2 The Emergence and Consolidation of Video Games as Culture 3 Video Games and Agency within Neoliberalism and Participatory Culture 4 Video Games as Experience 5 Video Games beyond Escapism: Empathy and Identification 6 Video Gamers and (Post-)Identity 7 Conclusion: This Is Not a Video Game, Or Is It? Index