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The Pequod
Dr Alistair Brown | Associate lecturer in English Literature; researching video games and literature

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New Essay

Through exploring the psychopathology of Capgras syndrome, in which a patient mistakes a loved one for an imposter, The Echo Maker offers a sustained meditation on the ways in which we project our own problems onto other people. As a reflection on the mysteries of consciousness, the novel offers some interesting if not especially new insights into the fuzzy boundaries between scientific and literary interpretations of the mind. Read more


Video Games as Successful Art

Thursday, August 09, 2012

Can video games be classed as art? This is the challenging aesthetic question I address in my new essay, Video Games as Successful Art.

Drawing on the work of Tom Bissell, I offer one definition of "art" that seems to fit very well with video games, as well as with literature and paintings. In this case, art is defined as a work which makes full use of the opportunities for expression that are available to it. Video games have available to them multiple media for expression (audio-visual, simulation, gameplay satisfaction), and this definition of art suggests that video games must satisfy a wider range of criteria for "success" than other creative forms. Usefully, this definition also means that we can still treat older games, which fully exploited the hardware of their own generation, as being artful in their own way.

The full essay is available here.

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