Gaming the System: The Political Potential of Play

University Liberal Arts: University Lecture Program

Liberal Arts

Undergraduate Course

Degree Students

Gaming the System

Fall 2021

Taught By: Colleen Macklin

Section: L

CRN: 7530

Credits: 0

Play. When we think of the word, we might envision images of children running around in a playground, puppies wrestling, or "gamers" concentrating on hitting their targets in a first-person shooter. Activities that seem frivolous and removed from the serious business of life. But what if instead, we looked beyond these images, to what play really involves: improvisation, creative problem-solving, strategy, empathy, subverting social norms, and systems-thinking? If play is how we naturally learn, perhaps games are more serious than we think. In this class we'll look at how games model the world, and the world is reflected in games and their systems. We'll also look at a world that is increasingly game-like, with political and economic actors "gaming the system," and lives impacted by algorithms and rules that create inequity and at the same time, tactical opportunities. We'll play games, deconstruct them, modify them, and make them, reflecting systems in the world and experiences that are fun and profound, serious and playful. By the end of the semester, you will have a deeper understanding of how games work, and through playing and making them, how the world works too. [This ULEC is in category 3, Interdisciplinary Approaches to the Arts and Humanities.]

Note: Students must register for both the lecture and discussion section of this course. The lecture meeting of this course will be delivered online at the time listed in this catalog entry. All discussion sections are scheduled to be delivered in-person and on campus.

College: University Liberal Arts (UL)

Department: University Lecture Program (ULIB)

Campus: New York City (GV)

Course Format: Lecture (L)

Max Enrollment: 125

Add/Drop Deadline: September 13, 2021 (Monday)

Online Withdrawal Deadline: November 21, 2021 (Sunday)

Seats Available: Yes

Status: Closed*

* Status information is updated every five minutes. The status of this course may have changed since the last update. Open seats may have restrictions that will prevent some students from registering. Updated: 7:21pm 12/8/2021 EST

Meeting Info:

Days: Thursday

Times: 12:20pm - 1:35pm

Building: Online Course

Room: 999

Date Range: 9/2/2021 - 12/9/2021