2008 Simon Fraser University English Department Graduate Conference
Games We Play:
Strategies of the Everyday
Place: Burnaby, British Columbia
Date: May 9th and 10th, 2008
Abstract Deadline: February 28th, 2008
Submit to: firstname.lastname@example.org
The 2008 SFU graduate conference will investigate how "games"—both as practices of and metaphors for everyday life—work for, within or against dominant ideological discourses. We are seeking papers from graduate students of all disciplines that address some of the following questions:
Do games have liberating potential or do they reproduce the structures of power?
How might studying the cultural representations of games and play contribute to a better understanding of a particular moment in history?
What productive combination, if any, can be made between theory, games and the notion of play?
How might games, play and the concepts attached to them come together with the cultural, political and economic concerns of society to produce new meanings?
Possible topics could include:
Representations of sports and games in culture
Relationship between play, work and capitalism
Repetition, boredom and the suburban
Narrative, poetic, cinematic and graphic form as play
The culture of sports, video-games and board-games
Arcades, fair grounds and shopping malls as public spaces of leisure/capital
Festivals, feast-days and parades
Constructing gender and/or class through games
The limits of reason and benefits/drawbacks of play and imagination
Constructing production as pleasure
Advertising and psychological mind-games
Gambling, luck and chance
Children and childhood play
Technological transformation/enabling of leisure
Irony, parody and laughter as strategic play
There will be two submission options:
Option 1: scholarly paper – please send abstracts of 250-300 words
Option 2: creative work – please send either 30 lines of poetry or a 300 word excerpt
Please note that although we encourage creative submissions, preference will go to papers.
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