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Gameworlds: Virtual Media and Children's Everyday Play

Giddings, Seth



This book is about play with, in, and around, digital media in everyday life. Building on detailed case studies it explores the nature of play in the virtual worlds of video games and how this play relates to, and crosses over into, everyday play in the actual world. Its main theme is the relationship between the actual and virtual worlds of play in everyday life. It addresses both the continuities and differences between digital play and longer-established modes of play (role-play, play with toys, etc.). The ‘gameworlds’ of the titles indicate both the virtual world designed into the videogame and the wider environments in which play is manifested: social relationships between players; between players, hardware and software; between the virtual worlds of the game and the media universes they extend (e.g. Harry Potter, Lego, Star Wars); and the gameworlds generated by children’s imaginations and creativity (through talk and role-play, drawings and outdoor play).

The gameworld raises questions about who, and what, is in play. Drawing on recent theoretical work in science and technology studies and new media studies, a key theme is the material and embodied character of these gameworlds and their components (players’ bodies, computer hardware, toys, virtual physics, the physical environment, etc.).


Giddings, S. (2014). Gameworlds: Virtual Media and Children's Everyday Play. New York: Bloomsbury Publishing.

Book Type Authored Book
Online Publication Date Oct 9, 2014
Publication Date Aug 28, 2014
Publisher Bloomsbury Publishing
Peer Reviewed Not Peer Reviewed
ISBN 9781623568023
Keywords virtual media, children's culture, videogames, computer games, everyday life, technoculture, play, games, childhood, ethnography, microethology
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