Joe and Grand Theft Auto: Violence, Power, and Propaganda
Theft Auto (1st person shooter games)
1) You will begin
preparing your case study research by first reading all the assigned
materials for that class day. These are the texts everyone in class
will read in advance of your session. These reading will introduce
you to some important concepts, terms, and ideas.
2) You will want to
preview the videos we will be screening in class, esp. Game Over,
which addresses some of the intellectual issues of analyzing video
games. The Killing Screens will be very useful as it talks
about critically interpreting violent images. You will want to situate
your analysis in terms of not only violence but issues of power,
gender, race, and class. Both videotapes have excellent online study
guides at the MEF website. Use these for basic concepts.
3) Your cases study
should research the social issues involved in first person shooter
video games. You will want a critical overview on their popularity,
their structure, and the debates over these cultural practices.
You may want to study the game Grand Theft Auto and research the
many commentaries on this product.. There are many websites on this
issue and numerous articles. You might find yourself enlightened
by Michael Moore's award-winning documentary Bowling for Columbine.
Remember, the issue is not merely/only to "dismiss" such games but
to conceptualize violence in more sophisticated ways. Talk about
how violent representations are constructed, how they
function, how they relate to questions of power, and why
they are problematic.