The Work of Play

Hung, Aaron . The Work of Play . New York : Peter Lang Publishing Inc, 2011. Print.

Summary: Some educational researchers claim that videogames can energize learning in both traditional and non-traditional contexts; cultivate skills more useful to a changing economy; and present information ways more appealing to students. The work of Play is an attempt to describe such learning on the micro-level, capturing the moment- by- moment interactions between players and showing how meaning are shaped over time. It builds on anthropological methods, including ethnography and conversation analysis, to re-construct how situated learning occurs and how players’ perception of the game evolves as their experiences with the game change.

Assessment: This is a valuable book for researchers and classroom use for undergraduates and graduate level studies.   The book builds on the work of many game researchers in the field. It is also interdisplinary in its approach, drawing in research in sociology, anthropology, computer science, human-computer interaction, linguistics, and educational game research. I hope this research appeals to anyone in the field of games research. If you happen to read it, I look forward to any feedback and criticism you may have.

Reflection: The book has given me new insight in the conversation styles gamers have between each other thanks to this book.  The book will be one of my “offensive lineman”, when making my position on gamers social environments and interactions. The book is also helping shape my topic from a low class beer into a classy fine wine.


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