Hello,

My name is Conor Mckeown.

I’m a PhD student at The University of Glasgow. My thesis is focusing on Videogames and Ecology using a variety of Post-human approaches to analysis. Over the next three years I hope to post the majority of my thoughts and activity here by way of generating a small following and also creating an additional way of gaining fresh perspectives on my own work.

Before studying in Glasgow I completed an MPhil in Cambridge studying Media Ecology (very different from Ecology proper), Cinema and Videogame theory. Before that, I studied in St Andrews and completed my undergraduate thesis on (you guessed it) a study of Videogames. I’ll get around to posting that in its submitted form on the website in the hopes of eventually tidying it up and attempting to publish it somewhere (maybe on the increasingly dwindling Videogamestudies.org journal…).

I created this page to go along with a 16/02/2013 talk I gave at The Mays creative writing group in Cambridge on Videogames and the great things you can do with them. To tell people ‘Videogame Studies is Dead’ may seem an odd topic to enthuse people into working more with videogames but, to be honest, I decided to go with my gut and tell people what I think is true rather than what I think they might want to hear. It seemed to work pretty well.

The main motion of this page (and the accompanying talk) was that Game Studies or Ludology (specifically the study of videogames – I’m not commenting on the other varied studies of sports or games) has had almost 16 years to get its act together and become something worth being a part of – instead, it’s become a discipline of being a discipline. There remains no unified methodology, no working definition of the media to be analysed, no declared sub-fields which would help to articulate the interests of its various contributors and no sense of any of these things appearing in the near future.

While this is kind of great given that interdisciplinarity allows a single study to borrow all the strongest ideas from various bodies of scholarly work, I believe that it is still worth investigating the idea of a more unified (or at least clearly defined) discipline of Game Studies.

I have kept the walkthrough of the talk on site in an attempt to keep things clear (and in case I’m ever able to give the talk in the future and need to remind myself where I am coming from).

Feel free to comment on the site and please do accept a link request (I’m good for it, I swear).

Conor Mckeown
University of Glasgow

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