The Gendering of Computer Gaming: Experience and Space

Bryce, J. & Rutter, J., 2003. “The Gendering of Computer Gaming: Experience and Space”, in Fleming, S. & Jones, I. Leisure Cultures: Investigations in Sport, Media and Technology, Leisure Studies Association, pp.3-22.

Abstract

The increasing popularity of computer gaming as a contemporary leisure activity, together with the use of PCs and games consoles as leisure technologies are evidence of the increasing convergence of new technology and leisure practice. The size and popularity of the games industry stands out in contrast to the lack of understanding of computer gaming as a serious leisure activity. Previous research on computer game playing has tended to focus on the negative aspects of gaming such as aggression, addiction, and social isolation, rather than viewing it as an activity which forms an important part of many people’s leisure lifestyles. This paper presents a very different image of gaming and gamers. It investigates computer gaming as a serious and competitive leisure activity. The paper looks at the gendered use and negotiation of leisure spaces by gamers in the context of the expansion of gaming into space and place outside the traditional domestic contexts and which blur boundaries between domestic and public leisure spaces. As such it assumes a perspective on computer gaming in which the activity is seen as part of the everyday leisure routines of gamers rather than a spectacular and notable stimulus or event. The paper argues that although certain aspects of computer gaming involve technological mediation and disembodiment, the changes in gaming texts and contexts have not radically improved the leisure constraints associated with gendered space and technologically-mediated activities. To this end, the paper draws on the existing gaming literature and preliminary ethnographic research of public competitive gaming.

Keywords

computer games, Internet, gendered space, leisure constraints, technology.

The Gendering of Computer Gaming: Experience and Space

Bryce, J. & Rutter, J., 2003. “The Gendering of Computer Gaming: Experience and Space”, in Fleming, S. & Jones, I. Leisure Cultures: Investigations in Sport, Media and Technology, Leisure Studies Association, pp.3-22.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *