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"I Play to Beat the Machine": Masculinity and the Video Game Industry in the United States

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Date Issued:
2013
Abstract/Description:
This thesis examines the video game industry within the United States from the first game that was created in 1958 until the shift to Japanese dominance of the industry in 1985, and how white, middle class masculinity was reflected through the sphere of video gaming. The first section examines the projections of white, middle class masculinity in U.S. culture and how that affected the types of video games that the developers created. The second section examines reflections of this masculine culture that surrounded video gaming in the 1970s and 1980s in the developers, gamers, and the media, while demonstrating how the masculine realm of video gaming was constructed. Lastly, a shift occurred after the 1980 release of Pac-Man, which led to a larger number of women gamers and developers, as well as an industry that embraced a broader audience. It concludes with the crash of the video game industry within the United States in 1983, which allowed Japanese video game companies to gain dominance in video gaming worldwide instead of the U.S. companies, such as Atari.
Title: "I Play to Beat the Machine": Masculinity and the Video Game Industry in the United States.
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Name(s): McDivitt, Anne, Author
Foster, Amy, Committee Chair
Cassanello, Robert, Committee Member
Solonari, Vladimir, Committee Member
, Committee Member
University of Central Florida, Degree Grantor
Type of Resource: text
Date Issued: 2013
Publisher: University of Central Florida
Language(s): English
Abstract/Description: This thesis examines the video game industry within the United States from the first game that was created in 1958 until the shift to Japanese dominance of the industry in 1985, and how white, middle class masculinity was reflected through the sphere of video gaming. The first section examines the projections of white, middle class masculinity in U.S. culture and how that affected the types of video games that the developers created. The second section examines reflections of this masculine culture that surrounded video gaming in the 1970s and 1980s in the developers, gamers, and the media, while demonstrating how the masculine realm of video gaming was constructed. Lastly, a shift occurred after the 1980 release of Pac-Man, which led to a larger number of women gamers and developers, as well as an industry that embraced a broader audience. It concludes with the crash of the video game industry within the United States in 1983, which allowed Japanese video game companies to gain dominance in video gaming worldwide instead of the U.S. companies, such as Atari.
Identifier: CFE0004889 (IID), ucf:49645 (fedora)
Note(s): 2013-08-01
M.A.
Arts and Humanities, History
Masters
This record was generated from author submitted information.
Subject(s): video games -- video game -- video game history -- 20th century -- 20th century history -- american history -- technology -- history of technology -- gender -- masculinity
Persistent Link to This Record: http://purl.flvc.org/ucf/fd/CFE0004889
Restrictions on Access: public 2013-08-15
Host Institution: UCF

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