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Theory! Huh! What is it good for?

Plenty of impromptu things happened at Gothcon. One was an off-the-cuff interview with Peter Malmberg, one-half the team of Rollspelsfika.

The first couple of sentences are in Swedish, or my attempt thereat, but afterwards it's in English.

I'm pretty happy with the argument I make here in response to Peter's challenge, which he put more politely just before the recording (I mean, more politely than me), but is pretty much as I've rendered it here in the post title.

I distinguish between the invisible, unexperienced dynamics, interactions, and purposes of play, analogous to metabolism and other unperceived processes of life; and the experienced dynamics of play, analogous to physiology that is other propiosensory or has indicators that are. Or as I put it, to most students upon entering my bio class, they can sincerely say, "I have lived my life, it's my lived experience, and I can tell you, this 'adenosine tri-phosphate,' as you call it, has nothing to do with it!!" They are of course dead wrong, pun very definitely intended.

The video embedded here is my recording from the con, in which the room's light was strangely blue, but is otherwise pretty good. Appearances to the contrary, I'm not mugging at the camera for the first couple of minutes, but checking the image centering, and fortunately that stops soon.

The Rollspelsfika audio-version (same recording) as streamed later, with listener input, is here at YouTube, including a followup video dialogue between Peter and his co-host Daniel (in Swedish). The recordings are also archived and commented upon here at SoundCloud, although as of this posting it hasn't caught up to our interview yet.

Games: 
Everway

Comments

APM's picture

With my limited knowledge I feel as if Roleplaying theory haven't evolved much since the big model. What's your view on that? What have you noticed about the evolution of theory within our hobby?

Ron Edwards's picture

I may not be the right person to answer. Perhaps I am too close to my own ideas to judge the quality of what others have suggested. Or perhaps I am too reluctant to criticize openly, because there is no way to avoid being accused of self-interest, and because my tolerance for internet grief has decreased a lot. There are a lot of very good thoughts available, before, during, after the Big Model construction period, but I don't know if "theory" in the sense that I care about the word has even been addressed, Big Model or not. As far as I can tell most of role-playing culture is simply glad that any such talk is gone.

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