June 24-25: Just A Game? The Aesthetics and Ethics of Video Games

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Kendall Walton
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Katherine Thomson-Jones

 

24-25 June 2016

A philosophical conference on the aesthetics and ethics of video games. 24-25 June 2016, University of Kent, Canterbury.

Video games have become one of the most popular forms of entertainment today. Many of them possess a wide array of artistic and aesthetic qualities and there is growing consensus now that they constitute an emerging new art form. At the same time, video games have raised important ethical questions and the debate on their moral status and impact has now gone well beyond the traditional academic context and community.

This international conference, organised by the Aesthetics Research Centre, will seek to explore relevant connections between the ethics and aesthetics of video games, thereby also drawing on insights from the philosophy of mind, philosophy of information, and feminist philosophy.

Schedule

Day one

9.15 – 9.45 Registration (coffee & tea provided)

9.45 – 10.00 Welcome

10.00 – 11.00 Shelby Moser, University of Kent. Can My Avatar Teach Me?: VR Gaming and Empathy.

11.00 – 12.15 Jon Robson, University of Nottingham, The Beautiful Gamer? On the Aesthetics of Videogame Performances.

12.15 – 2.00 Lunch (not provided)

2.00 – 3.30 Paper Sessions

2.00 – 2.30  C. Thi Nguyen, Utah Valley University. Games and the Aesthetics of Instrumentality.

2.30 – 3.00  Jack Davis, UCL. Fictional Immorality.

3.00 -3.30 Stephanie Patridge, Otterbein University. Where Are All the Women? On Videogames, Gender, and Invisibility.

3.30 – 4.00 Break (coffee & tea provided)

4.00 – 5.15 Mari Mikkola, Humboldt-Universität (Berlin). Objectification and video games: A Feminist Examination.

5.15 – 6.30 Aaron Meskin, University of Leeds. Videogames and Creativity.

7.30   Conference dinner at The Parrot

Day two

10.00 – 12.00 Paper Sessions

10.00 – 10.30 James Camien McGuiggan, University of Southampton. Manipulation and Indeterminacy in Video Games.

10.30 – 11.00  Kathryn Wojtkiewicz, City University of New York Graduate Center. More than Moral: Sexism as an Aesthetic Flaw in Video Games.

11.00 – 11.30 Al Baker, The University of Sheffield. The Extra Credits Machine: Videogame ontology and the role of the player

11.30 – 11.45 Break (coffee & tea provided)

 11.45 – 12.15  Nicolas Olsson-Yaouzis, UCL. Should feminists play Grand Theft Auto V?

12.15 – 12.45 Richard Woodward & Nathan Wildman, University of Hamburg. Video Games, Interactivity, and Fictional Incompleteness.

12.45 – 2.15 Lunch (not provided)

2.15 – 3.30   Katherine Thomson-Jones, Oberlin College. Understanding Interactivity in Art, Videogames, and Art Mods.

3.30 – 4.45 Kendall Walton, University of Michigan. Me, Myself and My Avatar.

 5.00 Wine reception (complimentary)