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"Ethics and the Gaze in Computer Gaming"

9/13/2023 - 3:30 pm

Location: Esports Lounge

Speaker: Nash Meade (University of Kentucky)


Title: "Ethics and the Gaze in Computer Gaming"


Abstract: The question of ethics in computer games has ultimately relied on a simple metaphysical distinction: if game worlds are real, ethics within them must also be real; if they are not, then ethics may not be. In this presentation, I will take a new approach to the ethical problem through an intersection of game studies and the existentialist work of Sartre on “the gaze.” I assert that the ethical question ought not rely on the metaphysics; instead, it ought to rely on the existential character of the person and their relation to the character they play, as well as to the non-player characters with which they interact. This provides a framework that is both flexible and player-oriented, rather than attempting to force objectivity onto an ultimately subjective experience with a game. 

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