Imaginary Games

by Chris Bateman

Imaginary Games Synopsis

Can games be art? When film critic Roger Ebert claimed in 2010 that videogames could never be art it was seen as a snub by many gamers. But from the perspective of philosophy of art this question was topsy turvey, since according to one of the most influential theories of representation all art is a game. Kendall Walton's prop theory explains how we interact with paintings, novels, movies and other artworks in terms of imaginary games, like a child's game of make-believe, wherein the artwork acts as a prop prescribing specific imaginings, and in this view there can be no question that games are indeed a strange and wonderful form of art. In Imaginary Games, game designer and philosopher Chris Bateman expands Walton's prop theory to videogames, board games, collectible card games like Pokemon and Magic: the Gathering, and tabletop role-playing games like Dungeons & Dragons. The book explores the many different fictional worlds that influence the modern world, the ethics of games, and the curious role the imagination plays in everything from religion to science and mathematics.

Imaginary Games Press Reviews

In this well-researched book Chris Bateman explores the ambiguous territory between the fictional and the real, and slays some dragons hiding therein. Highly recommended. (Ernest Adams, Founder of the International Game Developers' Association) A wonderfully refreshing and inventive look at games of many kinds, but especially digital games. It is seriously philosophical, but Bateman, a professional game designer, draws on a huge variety of resources far beyond the writings of academic philosophers - fascinating and fun! (Kendall Walton, Charles Stevenson Collegiate Professor of Philosophy and Professor of Art and Design at the University of Michigan)

Book Information

ISBN: 9781846949418
Publication date: 16th November 2011
Author: Chris Bateman
Publisher: Zero Books an imprint of John Hunt Publishing
Format: Paperback
Pagination: 334 pages
Categories: Popular philosophy, Philosophy: aesthetics,

About Chris Bateman

Acclaimed game designer, philosopher and author Chris Bateman is an expert on play and games, and undertakes philosophical investigations in a spirit of open-minded enquiry.

More About Chris Bateman

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