On Beauty

Gamers, Gender, & Turing

Special Feature - On Beauty

Games are beautiful, because in the case of games, someone or something gave rise to the creation, and someone or something must play. If it appears I am inadequately utilizing the language typically reserved for passion, desire, love, and flowers, it may be because gaming–it’s interaction and play–is being underestimated. For those working in the field of new media studies and art, most of us do this work because we believe that technology can provide radical possibilities of community and creativity. I believe digital games can provide these radical possibilities. I believe this about gaming, even though I am not a gamer. Continue Reading

An Uneven Partnership

Representations of Gender in The Last of Us

Essay - An Uneven Partnership

It’s no secret that digital games have a problem with gender representations. Research shows that women are vastly underrepresented in the medium and not simply as playable characters (Miller and Summers 735). Research also shows that when women do exist in games they are resigned to specific tropes and stereotypes that limit character development and which “[underscore] their secondary and exiguous status” (Behm-Morawitz and Mastro 809). While there is ample evidence of both the underrepresentation of and stereotyping of females, there has been less success explaining why such representative practices are damaging or why the game industry should address these problems. Continue Reading