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IAP 2019: Board Games and Counter Colonialism in the Americas

January 16, 2019 @ 1:00 pm - 5:00 pm

|Recurring Event (See all)

An event every day that begins at 1:00 pm, repeating until January 17, 2019

Independent Activities Period 2019
Enrollment: 16 participants: Advance sign-up required
Sign-up by 01/14

What messages and ideologies are embedded in the games we play, why does it matter, and how can we do better? In this two day workshop, we will look at contemporary board games with colonialist themes set in the Americas. We will discuss and play the games using a critical postcolonial lens in order to see how we can understand the function of these cultural artifacts in a greater political context. We will look at problematic issues which are prevalent in current commercial games, but we will also look at examples of counter-colonialist games.

The first day will focus on games set in Latin America, and the second day Anglo-America. We will discuss the rhetorical power of messaging through games and investigate both its negative and positive potential. Participants will spend a substantial part of the workshop playing and analyzing games. We do this since the object of analysis often is designed to transcend a meta-analytical mindset while having interactive properties which require authentic engagement through play. In other words, participants will have fun playing games while maintaining a critical analytical frame of mind. Since we are dealing with sensitive subjects, there will be special guidelines in effect in addition to the MIT Game Lab anti-harassment policy to make sure all participants feel safe and included.

We hope that you will join us in our quest for a more inclusive and exciting future for board games.


January 16, 2019
1:00 pm - 5:00 pm
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20 Ames St
Cambridge, MA 02139 United States
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