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Meaningful Play 2018 at Michigan State University

Paper Information

TitleTeaching Literature Through Theatrical Play: Embodied Difference in Digital Theater Games
Presenter(s)Gina Bloom
SessionEmbodiment and Games
TimeThursday, October 11, 11:00a-12:00p
LocationMSU Room
FormatPaper Presentation
DescriptionThis paper critically investigates the use of analog theater games to teach Shakespeare in K-12 and college classrooms, examining criticism that these games foreclose critical thinking, especially about gender and racial identity. The paper proposes that limitations of these games are a function of their analog format. As they are traditionally played, theater games treat the body as a tool and medium of expression, not as an object to be critically investigated. Digitally remediating these games addresses their shortcomings, as is shown through research on Play the Knave, a mixed reality motion capture Shakespeare game co-designed by the paper's author. Knave uses a motion sensing camera to capture player movement, mapping it onto an avatar. Since players act through an avatar, the game provokes players' awareness of the mediation of their bodies, organically opening up conversations about embodied difference and classroom diversity.

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