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War, Adventure and the Spectacle of Masculine Whiteness in Call of Duty
Linnaeus University, Faculty of Arts and Humanities, Department of Languages. (Linnaeus University Centre for Concurrences in Colonial and Postcolonial Studies)ORCID iD: 0000-0003-3293-6324
2016 (English)In: European Association of American Studies: Biennial Confrence, Constanta, Romania, April 22-25, 2016, 2016Conference paper, Presentation (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

In ”Romancing the Empire”, Amy Kaplan observes how the American historical adventure romance of the 1890s revolved around a “spectacle of masculinity”. The heroic male adventure protagonist’s ritual performance of violence in these texts serves the dual purpose of metaphorically enacting and encouraging the expansion of the borders of the empire and establishing their masculinity. In this way, Kaplan argues, “swashbuckling romances about knights errant offer a cognitive and libidinal map of US geo-politics during the shift from continental conquest to overseas empire”.

Kaplan’s observations constitutes a vantage point from which it is possible to understand the contemporary and ubiquitous First Person Military Shooter, a genre of games that includes the Medal of Honor, Battlefield, and Call of Duty series. While these military adventure games have been understood as a “crucial space of articulating American empire, providing a vehicle … where U.S. efforts to secure power is normalized and justified”, as argued by Leonard and King, the way in which they make the gamer enact a combined spectacle masculinity and whiteness has not been discussed. This paper explores Call of Duty: World as War (2008) as a space where white masculinity is ritually performed. 

Kaplan, Amy. “Romancing the Empire.” American Literary History 2, no. 4 (1990): 659-690.

King, C. Richard, and David J. Leonard. “Wargames as a New Frontier.” In Joystick Soldiers: The Politics of Play in Military Video Games, edited by N. Huntemann and M Payne, 91-105. London: Routledge, 2010.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2016.
Keyword [en]
postcolonial studies, game studies, US empire
National Category
Cultural Studies
Research subject
Humanities
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:lnu:diva-64502OAI: oai:DiVA.org:lnu-64502DiVA: diva2:1103639
Conference
European Association of American Studies, Biennial Confrence, Constanta, Romania, April 22-25, 2016
Available from: 2017-05-30 Created: 2017-05-30 Last updated: 2017-06-14Bibliographically approved

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CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • harvard1
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf