Course descriptions and syllabi for Fall 2018 can be found below.
Digital Game Cultures
This class offers a broad introduction to the phenomenon of video games, focusing primarily on Western U.S. histories and cultural practices. We will investigate the relationship between play and games, learn how to analyze and practice basic game design principals, examine current events around issues of race, gender and inclusivity in the contemporary game scene, study cultural practices as diverse as modding, cheating, and gold farming, and come to better understand the stakes of growing practices in e-sports and global game economies. In short, this course will transform the simple everyday pleasures of games into something new, complex, and unfamiliar.
Politics of Code (PhD)
This course begins with the twin propositions that all technology is inherently political, and that digital technologies have come to define our contemporary media landscape. Software, hardware, and code shape the practices and discourses of our digital culture, such that in order to understand the present we must take seriously the politics of the digital. The course will primarily focus on the politics and theory of the past twenty years, from the utopian discourses of the early web to the rise of immaterial labor economies and the quantification and management of subjects and populations. Our ultimate goal will be to identify a political theory of the present age - one that takes seriously the role of computation and digitization.