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Playful Virtual Violence
An Ethnography of Emotional Practices in Video Games


Part of Elements in Histories of Emotions and the Senses

  • Date Published: October 2020
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9781108819435

£ 17.00

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About the Authors
  • Violence in video games has been a controversial object of public discourse for several decades. The question of what kind of emotional experiences players enact when playing with representations of physical violence in games has been largely ignored however. Building upon an extensive ethnographic study of players' emotional practices in video games, including participant observation in online games, qualitative interviews, an analysis of YouTube videos and gaming magazines since the 1980s, this Element provides new insights into the complexity and diversity of player experiences and the pleasures of playful virtual violence. Instead of either defending or condemning the players, it contributes foundational, unprejudiced knowledge for a societal and academic debate on a critical aspect of video gaming. This title is also available as Open Access on Cambridge Core.

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    Product details

    • Date Published: October 2020
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9781108819435
    • length: 75 pages
    • dimensions: 230 x 153 x 5 mm
    • weight: 0.2kg
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    1. Emotional practices, popular pleasures, and virtual violence
    2. Studying emotional practices in video games
    3. Feeling through virtual bodies
    4. Between competition and cooperation
    5. Righteous revenge and transgressive humour
    6. Beyond fun

  • Author

    Christoph Bareither, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin

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