Summary of Art Form For The Digital Age by Henry Jenkins
In the article “Art Form For The Digital Age,” by Henry Jenkins, Jenkins elaborates on the ever expanding video game industry and cites that it is now being considered a digital art. The gaming industry is also said to be the form of art in today’s economy that has grown the most. The gaming industry has progressed the most in the past century, starting with silent ping-pong games and evolving into intense story plot and battle games liken to Final Fantasy. Games are becoming more and more realistic, characters can talk, blink, jump, wave and move individual body parts, mimicking human behavior. Parental advisory ratings are an incredibly large part of the industry. In this new age of video games, players can blow up enemies and viscerally rip them apart. They have become so realistic that it is surmised that some children have difficulties differentiating video from reality and act out mirroring the game characters behavior. It is obvious that the gaming world isn’t promoting youth violence; rather show the artistic view point of what the creator’s vision is.
Also, online play allows you to have opponents who are not only not in the same room with you; they can be across the globe. It is essentially like a chat room where players can view other player’s stats and choose who to play, creating a more intense and challenging game. More and more young adults seeking careers and degrees in graphic design are leaning toward the gaming industry rather than the film industry. Gaming is as big now as cinemas were when they were first introduced to the public. Now, you can stay home and play games rather than go out. There are so many types of games that you can virtually do anything you want to. Due to the endless possibilities the gaming industry will continue to grow as a respected digital art.
Jenkins, Henry. “Art Form For the Digital Age.” Technology Review Sept. 2000: n. pag. Print.
Summary of Do Video Games Kill by Karen Stemheimer
In the commentary, “Do Video Games Kill”, Karen Sternheimer brings to light an interesting and incredibly controversial subject; are video games to blame for youth gun violence? She maintains that due to many biased opinions; political, religious and advocacy groups, the media have failed to provide ample information to the public resulting in the inability to form an educated opinion, in turn causing a mass hysteria resulting in tougher security guidelines in schools, stricter juvenile laws and far less personal and parental responsibility. An incredibly popular first person shooter video game, Doom, is ripe with gratuitous violence. So much so that it has been blamed for several mass shootings, perpetrated by middle-class, white, young-adult males. The media, politicians, advocacy groups as well as the FBI are steadfast in claiming that the only rational explanation is that of the individuals falling prey to the aggression inciting video game. In short, the violent video game made them do it. One might be reminded of the Salem Witch Trials, where no educated explanation can be derived, those which cannot defend themselves, no matter how far-fetched the reasoning, is the obvious answer.
Religious and political dogma has run rampant. The media have created unnecessary fear and moral panic to legitimize their personal agendas under the guise of “protecting children”. More often than not, alternate explanations are not even taken into consideration. Depression, poverty, ignorance, self deprecation, bullying, violent home life are seldom cited and when cited are not explored in depth. The justice system in nearly every state has revised its juvenile justice laws to increase their penalties in many ways; however, the Supreme Court deemed juvenile executions unconstitutional, which in turn created even more fodder for the paranoid masses. In summation, the author goads the reader to delve more into the alternative explanations in hopes that by increasing the masses education, the masses will be less apt to point the proverbial finger at the video games and look more toward the socioeconomic and psychological reasoning behind the individual’s violent behavior.
Sternheimer, Karen. “Do Video Games Kill.” The Journal of American Sociological Association Winter Contexts (2007): n. pag. Print.
Summary of In Defense of Hip-Hop by Cathleen Rountree
In the article “In Defense of Hip Hop”, Cathleen Rountree details the nation’s growing innate disrespect for the musical genre of Hip Hop and illustrates a way to understand, respect and even advocate for the genre. She further argues that uneducated masses immediately condemn the art form ignorantly without fully understanding it, and furthermore, are unwilling to attempt to understand it. According to numerous sources, Hip Hop has been attributed to ignorance, crime, incarceration, disrespect and has created negative monikers reinforcing the negative connotations and stereotypes associated with the oft misunderstood art form. Lyricists have been shunned and ostracized by the nation and targeted with blame for the derogatory actions of pop-culture today. Upon further investigation, hip hop has now been linked to positive media projects such as films and collaborative albums featuring individuals from many different backgrounds who have used hip hop as a means of expressing their hardships and misadventures.
Liken to the beatniks of the fifties, the artists merely attempt to satiate their want for personal development and self discovery rather than incite violence. The author concludes that through becoming more educated on the artist’s personal journey and actually listening to or reading and comprehending the lyrics, one is able to find the art to be poetic, cathartic and even inspiring. In doing so, the reader is able to positively redefine their personal opinion of the genre by delving into the back stories behind the songs and note the courage necessary to write such personal and sometimes endearing phraseology.
Rountree, Cathleen. “In Defense of Hip Hop.” Santa Cruz Sentinel 19 May 2007: n. pag. Print.
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