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ISEA2015: The 21st International Symposium on Electronic Art
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Tuesday, August 18 • 4:00pm - 5:30pm
[Panel 14] The Visual Politics of Play: On The Signifying Practices of Digital Games

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Digital games are so pervasive that they increasingly shape how people ascribe meaning to their world; in short, games are now culture. Similarly to music, literature, television, fashion and film, games as culture constitute "networks of meaningness which individuals and groups use to make sense of and communicate with one another" (Stuart Hall). Games expand the ways that we image our own possibilities, create empathetic connection, and seed ethical engagement with lived-world challenges and problems. Recent games 'culture wars', notably, GamerGate definitively confirmed that games traffic in the politics of representation, just as any other form of mass media. This panel examines the social functions of playable media as powerful forms of visual culture and ideological world making, especially as they relate to notions of difference.

This panel welcomes contributions in critical games research that model intersectional approaches foregrounding the politics of representation, and signifying practices of video games as new media and visual culture. Essays that consider the playability of specific games in relation to their signifying practices are of particular interest. Possible themes may include: representations of race, nation, class; issues of gender/sexuality; games and Diaspora/creolization; close textual analyses using critical studies and/or other disruptive and interdisciplinary approaches.

avatar for D. Fox Harrell

D. Fox Harrell

Cambridge, MA, United States, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
D. Fox Harrell, Ph.D., is Associate Professor of Digital Media in the Comparative Media Studies Program and the Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory at MIT. He founded and directs the MIT Imagination, Computation, and Expression Laboratory (ICE Lab). Harrell holds... Read More →
avatar for Jennifer Jenson

Jennifer Jenson

Professor, York University, Canada
Jennifer Jenson, Ph.D., is Director for the Institute for Research on Digital Learning and Professor of Pedagogy and Technology in the Faculty of Education at York University. She has played, made and researched games for nearly two decades. Specifically, she has taken an intersectional... Read More →
avatar for Soraya Murray

Soraya Murray

Assistant Professor, Film + Digital Media, University of California
New media art, theory, and criticism. Visual culture and cultural studies approaches to art, film, video, and electronic games. Theories of technology and globalization. Representations of otherness including race, nation, class, gender, sexuality.

Tuesday August 18, 2015 4:00pm - 5:30pm PDT
Room 4310 Simon Fraser University (Goldcorp Centre for the Arts, 149 West Hastings Street, Vancouver, BC V6B 1H4, Canada)

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