An Emerging Literature: Reading Video Games in the Classroom




Willingham, Kaylee

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Office of the Vice President for Research


The question as to whether or not video games can be seen as literature is an ongoing debate. Cases are strongly made for both sides, and the conversation surrounding it is receiving widespread interest. In order to contribute to this ongoing discussion, this paper analyzes this emerging media within the realm of a literature classroom to better see, and understand, how video games have grown from their beginnings and entered the realm of storytelling. Understanding that the various genres of video games limits their ability to be seen as literature, while working to rebuke the stigmas that surround video games altogether, I claim that video games have an opportunity to not only allow for a new field of study and criticism, but enhance the argumentation and analysis that already exists. By looking at the current discussions regarding video games, as well as the listings and reception of video games within universities, I hope to give evidence and reasoning to back up and contribute to the idea that video games will soon be introduced into the classrooms and criticized as a narrative genre.



literature, video games, pedagogy, ludology, narratology