Why We Play: An Anthropological Study

Why We Play An Anthropological Study Whether it s childhood make believe the theater sports or even market speculation play is one of humanity s seemingly purest activities a form of entertainment and leisure and a chance to explore

  • Title: Why We Play: An Anthropological Study
  • Author: Roberte Hamayon Damien Simon
  • ISBN: 9780986132568
  • Page: 103
  • Format: Paperback
  • Whether it s childhood make believe, the theater, sports, or even market speculation, play is one of humanity s seemingly purest activities a form of entertainment and leisure and a chance to explore the world and its possibilities in an imagined environment or construct But as Roberte Hamayon shows in this book, play has implications that go even further than that ExplWhether it s childhood make believe, the theater, sports, or even market speculation, play is one of humanity s seemingly purest activities a form of entertainment and leisure and a chance to explore the world and its possibilities in an imagined environment or construct But as Roberte Hamayon shows in this book, play has implications that go even further than that Exploring play s many dimensions, she offers an insightful look at why play has become so ubiquitous across human cultures Hamayon begins by zeroing in on Mongolia and Siberia, where communities host national holiday games similar to the Olympics Within these events Hamayon explores the performance of ethical values and local identity, and then she draws her analysis into larger ideas examinations of the spectrum of play activities as they can exist in any culture She explores facets of play such as learning, interaction, emotion, strategy, luck, and belief, and she emphasizes the crucial ambiguity between fiction and reality that is at the heart of play as a phenomenon Revealing how consistent and coherent play is, she ultimately shows it as a unique modality of action that serves an invaluable role in the human experience.

    One thought on “Why We Play: An Anthropological Study”

    1. In this book Hamayon analyses Play as a fundamental human behaviour and demonstrates how Play is worthy not only of anthropological attention but also to be elevated to a fully-fledged analytical category. In fact, the author considers the discipline’s lack of attention to play a projection of Western bias that considers playing and games as a ‘non-serious’ kind of doing. In her pursue of demonstrating the relevance of play, Hamayon uses ethnographic examples from her long term fieldwork w [...]

    2. This really disappointed me. After recently re-reading Homo Ludens: A Study of the Play-Element in Culture, I was hoping for a more contemporary view on play, something that really brings the field up to date. Instead, this focuses almost exclusively on one group of people, and draws almost all of its observations and conclusions from there. A modern examination of play should at least acknowledge the existence of video games and the resurgence of board games. It should look at gambling and the [...]

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