Building Imaginary Worlds

The Theory and History of Subcreation

Building Imaginary Worlds

Mark J.P. Wolf’s study of imaginary worlds theorizes world-building within and across media, including literature, comics, film, radio, television, board games, video games, the Internet, and more. Building Imaginary Worlds departs from prior approaches to imaginary worlds that focused mainly on narrative, medium, or genre, and instead considers imaginary worlds as dynamic entities in and of themselves. Wolf argues that imaginary worlds—which are often transnarrative, transmedial, and transauthorial in nature—are compelling objects of inquiry for Media Studies. Chapters touch on: a theoretical analysis of how world-building extends beyond storytelling, the engagement of the audience, and the way worlds are conceptualized and experienced a history of imaginary worlds that follows their development over three millennia from the fictional islands of Homer’s Odyssey to the present internarrative theory examining how narratives set in the same world can interact and relate to one another an examination of transmedial growth and adaptation, and what happens when worlds make the jump between media an analysis of the transauthorial nature of imaginary worlds, the resulting concentric circles of authorship, and related topics of canonicity, participatory worlds, and subcreation’s relationship with divine Creation Building Imaginary Worlds also provides the scholar of imaginary worlds with a glossary of terms and a detailed timeline that spans three millennia and more than 1,400 imaginary worlds, listing their names, creators, and the works in which they first appeared.

The Routledge Companion to Media Technology and Obsolescence

The Routledge Companion to Media Technology and Obsolescence

While so many books on technology look at new advances and digital technologies, The Routledge Companion to Media Technology and Obsolescence looks back at analog technologies that are disappearing, considering their demise and what it says about media history, pop culture, and the nature of nostalgia. From card catalogs and typewriters to stock tickers and cathode ray tubes, contributors examine the legacy of analog technologies, including those, like vinyl records, that may be experiencing a resurgency. Each essay includes a brief history of the technology leading up to its peak, an analysis of the reasons for its decline, and a discussion of its influence on newer technologies.

Revisiting Imaginary Worlds

A Subcreation Studies Anthology

Revisiting Imaginary Worlds

The concept of world and the practice of world creation have been with us since antiquity, but they are now achieving unequalled prominence. In this timely anthology of subcreation studies, an international roster of contributors come together to examine the rise and structure of worlds, the practice of world-building, and the audience's reception of imaginary worlds. Including essays written by world-builders A.K. Dewdney and Alex McDowell and offering critical analyses of popular worlds such as those of Oz, The Lord of the Rings, Star Trek, Star Wars, Battlestar Galactica, and Minecraft, Revisiting Imaginary Worlds provides readers with a broad and interdisciplinary overview of the issues and concepts involved in imaginary worlds across media platforms.

World-Builders on World-building

World-Builders on World-building

With contributions from a distinguished group of world-builders, including academics, writers and designers, this anthology of essays describes the process and discusses the nature of subcreation and the construction of worlds. From Oz to MUD, Walden to Rockall, all the worlds featured in this volume share one thing in common; they began in someone's imagination, grew from there, and became worlds built with the assistance of multiple authors and a variety of different ideas and media, including designs, imagery, sound, music, stories, and more. This book examines this development, with examples and discussions pertaining to the process and final product of the building of imaginary worlds, including some transmedial worlds. World-Builders on World-Building is a fascinating deep dive into the practical problems of world-building, as well as the theoretical aspects. It is ideal for students, scholars and even practitioners interested in media studies, game studies, subcreation studies, franchise studies, transmedia studies, and pop culture.

Imagined Worlds and Constructed Differences in the Hebrew Bible

Imagined Worlds and Constructed Differences in the Hebrew Bible

The purpose of this volume is twofold: to introduce readers to the study of cultural memory and identity in relation to the Hebrew Bible, and to set up strategies for connecting studies of the historical contexts and literature of the Bible to parallel issues in the present day. The volume questions how we can better understand the divide between insider and outsider and the powerful impact of prejudice as a basis for preserving differences between "us" and "them"? In turn the contributors question how such frameworks shape a community's self-perception, its economics and politics. Guided by the general framework of Anderson's theory of nationalism and the outsider, such issues are explored in related ways throughout each of the contributions. Each contribution focuses on social, economic, or political issues that have significantly shaped or influenced dominant elements of cultural memory and the construction of identity in the biblical texts. Together the contributions present a larger proposal: the broad contours of memory and identity in the Bible are the products of a collective desire to reshape the social-political world.

Film Worlds

A Philosophical Aesthetics of Cinema

Film Worlds

Film Worlds unpacks the significance of the "worlds" that narrative films create, offering an innovative perspective on cinema as art. Drawing on aesthetics and the philosophy of art in both the continental and analytic traditions, as well as classical and contemporary film theory, it weaves together multiple strands of thought and analysis to provide new understandings of filmic representation, fictionality, expression, self-reflexivity, style, and the full range of cinema's affective and symbolic dimensions. Always more than "fictional worlds" and "storyworlds" on account of cinema's perceptual, cognitive, and affective nature, film worlds are theorized as immersive and transformative artistic realities. As such, they are capable of fostering novel ways of seeing, feeling, and understanding experience. Engaging with the writings of Jean Mitry, Pier Paolo Pasolini, Christian Metz, David Bordwell, Gilles Deleuze, and Hans-Georg Gadamer, among other thinkers, Film Worlds extends Nelson Goodman's analytic account of symbolic and artistic "worldmaking" to cinema, expands on French philosopher Mikel Dufrenne's phenomenology of aesthetic experience in relation to films and their worlds, and addresses the hermeneutic dimensions of cinematic art. It emphasizes what both celluloid and digital filmmaking and viewing share with the creation and experience of all art, while at the same time recognizing what is unique to the moving image in aesthetic terms. The resulting framework reconciles central aspects of realist and formalist/neo-formalist positions in film theory while also moving beyond them and seeks to open new avenues of exploration in film studies and the philosophy of film.

Transmedia Archaeology

Storytelling in the Borderlines of Science Fiction, Comics and Pulp Magazines

Transmedia Archaeology

In this book, the authors examine manifestations of transmedia storytelling in different historical periods and countries, spanning the UK, the US and Argentina. It takes us into the worlds of Conan the Barbarian, Superman and El Eternauta, introduces us to the archaeology of transmedia, and reinstates the fact that it's not a new phenomenon.

Unified Discourse Analysis

Language, Reality, Virtual Worlds and Video Games

Unified Discourse Analysis

Discourse Analysis is becoming increasingly "multimodal", concerned primarily with the interplay of language, image and sound. Video Games allow humans to create, live in and have conversations with new multimodal worlds. In this ground-breaking new textbook, best-selling author and experienced gamer, James Paul Gee, sets out a new theory and method of discourse analysis which applies to language, the real world, science and video games. Rather than analysing the language of video games, this book uses discourse analysis to study games as communicational forms. Gee argues that language, science, games and everyday life are deeply related and each is a series of conversations. Discourse analysis should not be just about language, but about human interactions with the world, with games, and with each other, interactions that make meaning and sustain lives amid risk and complexity. Written in a highly accessible style and drawing on a wide range of video games from World of Warcraft and Chibi-Robo to Tetris, this engaging textbook is essential reading for students in discourse analysis, new media and digital culture.