Up on ihobo today, the final part of Towards Videogame Aesthetics, in which I slam Alain Badiou into Susan Sontag and see what survives. Here’s an extract:
In 1964, literary theorist Susan Sontag published an influential essay entitled 'Against Interpretation', which argued that the twentieth century was suffocating the power of art beneath an obsession with interpretation… She stated: "By reducing the work of art to its content and then interpreting that, one tames the work of art", and asserted that "the merit of these works certainly lies elsewhere than in their 'meanings'." Although she was certainly not thinking about games as part of her criticism, it carries forward comfortably into that arena. The limp reviews that pass as standard in the context of digital games really do reduce these art works to content – namely feature lists and basic descriptions of play.
You can read the entire piece over at ihobo.com. More game aesthetics later this year!