Call: Game Studies, Culture, Play, and Practice Area at Southwest Popular/American Culture Association (SWPACA) 2016 Conference

Call for Papers: Game Studies, Culture, Play, and Practice Area
37th Annual Southwest Popular / American Culture Association (SWPACA) Conference
February 10-13, 2016
Hyatt Regency Hotel and Conference Center
Albuquerque, NM

Submission deadline: November 1, 2015

The Game Studies, Culture, Play, and Practice Area welcomes papers, panels, and other proposals on games (digital and otherwise) and their study and development. The Area is also offering a three hour workshop titled “Making the Makerspace: A Look Into the Creation of the iSpace” on the first day of the conference.


Possible topics include (but are in no way limited to):

  • Advertising (both in-game and out)
  • Alternative reality games
  • Archiving and artifactual preservation
  • Competitive/clan gaming
  • Design and development
  • Economic and industrial histories and studies
  • Educational games and their pedagogies
  • Foreign language games and culture
  • Game art/game-based art (including game sound)
  • Game streaming
  • Haptics and interface studies
  • Histories of games
  • Localization
  • Machinima
  • MOGs, MMOGs, and other forms of online/networked gaming
  • Performance
  • Pornographic games
  • Religion and games
  • Representations of race and gender
  • Representations of space and place
  • The rhetoric of games and game systems
  • Serious games
  • Strategy games
  • Table-top games and gaming
  • Technological, aesthetic, economic, and ideological convergence
  • Theories of play
  • Wireless and mobile gaming

For paper proposals: Please submit a 250 word abstract and brief biographical sketch to the conference event management site: Make sure to select the Game Studies, Culture, Play, and Practice topic area. The submission deadline is 11/1/2015.

For panel and other proposals: Feel free to query the Area Chair first (Judd Ruggill, Arizona State University, Panel and other proposals should also be submitted to the conference event management site and include the information requested for individual paper proposals (each on a separate submission form), as well as a 100-word statement of the panel’s raison d’etre and any noteworthy organizational features.

As always, proposals are welcome from any and all scholars (including graduate students, independent scholars, and tenured, tenure-track, and emeritus faculty) and practitioners (developers, artists, archivists, and so forth). Also, unusual formats, technologies, and the like are encouraged.


Graduate students accepted to present in this area may apply for the conference’s monetary Computer Culture and Game Studies Award. The full paper is due to the judges on 12/15/2015. For details on this award and the conference’s other awards for graduate students, see .


The Area Research Coordinator is pleased to announce this year’s Game Studies, Culture, Play, and Practice workshop, “Making the Makerspace: A Look Into the Creation of the iSpace.” The workshop will be led by Marijel “Maggie” Melo (University of Arizona). Participants will explore the technologies, stakeholders, and politics involved in creating a university makerspace. The University of Arizona’s iSpace will serve as a frame to generate discussions and ideas. Participants will engage in mini maker projects throughout the workshop.

The workshop is limited to 10 participants, and the goal is for participants to leave with a working conceptualization of a makerspace specific to their locale. A list of resources will also be provided. To enroll in the workshop, please email a 100-250 word statement of interest to Maggie Melo ( and the Area Research Coordinator, Jennifer deWinter ( Nota bene: There is no charge for the workshop (for registered conference presenters/attendees).

The application deadline for the workshop is 1/15/16.


The Game Studies, Culture, Play, and Practice Area is international in scope and emphasizes diversity, an openness to innovative approaches and presentations, and the energetic practice of post-conference collaboration and publication.

The Area Research Coordinator would like to note the following publication opportunities for this year’s participants:

  1. The SWPACA’s peer-reviewed journal, _Dialogue: The Interdisciplinary Journal of Popular Culture and Pedagogy_, welcomes submissions. Please visit for information on the journal and submission process.
  2. As an official affiliate of the SWPACA, _Reconstruction: Studies in Contemporary Culture_ always welcomes papers, especially from new scholars and from emerging disciplines. For more information about the journal, visit

For more information about these opportunities, or to discuss others, please email the Area Research Coordinator (Jennifer deWinter,


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