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Philosophy Through Video Games

How can Wii Sports teach us about metaphysics? Can playing World of Warcraft lead to greater self-consciousness? How can we learn about aesthetics, ethics and divine attributes from Zork, Grand Theft Auto, and Civilization?

A variety of increasingly sophisticated video games are rapidly overtaking books, films, and television as America's most popular form of media entertainment. It is estimated that by 2011 over 30 percent of US households will own a Wii console - about the same percentage that owned a television in 1953.

In Philosophy Through Video Games, Jon Cogburn and Mark Silcox - philosophers with game industry experience - investigate the aesthetic appeal of video games, their effect on our morals, the insights they give us into our understanding of perceptual knowledge, personal identity, artificial intelligence, and the very meaning of life itself, arguing that video games are popular precisely because they engage with longstanding philosophical problems.

Topics covered include:
* The Problem of the External World
* Dualism and Personal Identity
* Artificial and Human Intelligence in the Philosophy of Mind
* The Idea of Interactive Art
* The Moral Effects of Video Games
* Games and God's Goodness

Games discussed include: Madden Football, Wii Sports, Guitar Hero, World of Warcraft, Sims Online, Second Life, Baldur's Gate, Knights of the Old Republic, Elder Scrolls, Zork, EverQuest Doom, Halo 2, Grand Theft Auto, Civilization, Mortal Kombat, Rome: Total War, Black and White, Aidyn Chronicles

Table of contents: 

1 The Game inside the Mind, the Mind inside the Game (The Nintendo Wii Gaming Console)
2 I, Player: The Puzzle of Personal Identity (MMORPGS and Virtual Communities)
3 Artificial and Human Intelligence (Single-Player RPGs)
4 The Metaphysics of Interactive Art (Puzzle and Adventure Games)
5 Do Video Games Make us Evil? (First-Person Shooters)
6 Games and God’s Goodness (World-Builder and Tycoon Games)
7 Epilogue: Video Games and the Meaning of Life

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Author

Assoc. Prof. Jon Cogburn, Louisiana State University, USA; Assoc. Prof. Mark Silcox University of Central Oklahoma, USA

Year

2008

ISBN

ISBN-10: 0415988586, ISBN-13: 978-0415988582

Length

216 pages

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British Film Institute (BFI) - Teaching Film and Media Studies

BFI Education publishes a growing range of teaching packs, teaching guides (many of which are free)and resources to support the use of moving image media in schools. These resources also include full lesson plans and sheets.

Particularly aimed at teachers new to Media Studies post-16, the series provides a wealth of information and new ideas for all teachers involved with the teaching of AS and A level Media Studies, (OCR, AQA and WJEC), AS and A level Film Studies (WJEC), GNVQ/AVCE, Btech, Scottish Highers/Advanced Highers, and Lifelong Learning courses.

Breaking Boundaries with Video Production: Inteview with Steve Goodman

This is an interview with Steve Goodman. Since 1984, Educational Video Center (EVC) in New York has trained and assisted hundreds of young people in producing award-winning broadcast quality video documentaries. But to EVC Founder Steve Goodman, the goal is not external rewards but internal transformation. In this excerpt from an interview conducted in 1993 by Kathleen Tyner for Strategies newsletter, he explains the importance to media literacy of young people creating and producing their own video documentaries. In addition to publishing several excellent handbooks for video production, Goodman published in 2003 a major new work: Teaching Youth Media: A Critical Guide to Literacy, Video Production and Social Change.

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Author

Kathleen Tyner

Year

2007

Length

1 article

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Using video with "Pharmaceutical Science/ Phamarcochemistry and social issues"

Article from the Good Practices Database's "finest selection" by the VideoAktiv project. Students Chemistry and students Pharmacochemistry from the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam (Netherlands) worked together in small teams and video-interviewed experts on their own chosen topics. Afterwards a digital discussion took place.

Sponsors and Exhibitors

MediaSite Kaltura AmberScript

Organisers