Authored by: Frans Mäyrä

The Routledge Companion to Video Game Studies

Print publication date:  December  2013
Online publication date:  January  2014

Print ISBN: 9780415533324
eBook ISBN: 9780203114261
Adobe ISBN: 9781136290510


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“Culture” is a complex concept with multiple different uses and meanings. The main senses that dictionaries deal with relate to “arts and culture” on the one hand, and “customs, norms and ideas” on the other. Both of these uses have their origins in the etymological root of the Latin cultura, meaning “growing,” “cultivation.” Culture is not something we are born with, but rather something that we learn and adopt from our environment as we grow up. When “video game culture” is considered, all these basic dimensions of the concept are relevant. The discussions and research surrounding the game culture and cultures of gaming involve both appreciation of games as cultural phenomena, or art, as well as the surrounding cultural norms and players’ practices. While the first approach is primarily related to aesthetics and the humanities, and the latter mostly to the social sciences, they are today combined and mixed together in other various approaches to “culture.”

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