Academics Firing Guns

scholars with guns

From November 3rd to 4th, a group of brave academics gathered in Bergen, Norway for the Worlds of Warcraft seminar, a project that will result in a critical anthology of writing about the world’s most popular massively multiplayer online game, World of Warcraft, to be published by MIT Press in 2008. After two days of closely reading and discussing essays on topics ranging from representations of feminism, postcolonialism, and capitalist economies in World of Worldcraft, to character naming conventions, spatial representation, narrative conventions, deviant strategies, and roleplaying in the game, these scholars gathered for a group activity at a shooting range, where they were taught to fire shotguns at clay pigeons by a retired special forces combat sniper. Using the video camera in my N73 cellphone, I tried to document the event in the above short video.

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6 comments on “Academics Firing Guns
  1. Knud says:

    Arrrr, yet another reason why I envy all of you at the workshop! I’m sitting in a hotel room in Athens, GA, with destroyed vocal chords, while you are having fun shooting guns! Sigh…

  2. Linn says:

    SCARY!!! Academic WoW’ers with guns?!! Will I ever be able to wander the halls of UiB safely again?

  3. Jill says:

    Oh, we look really scary in that photo. Like we’re about to go out on a raid…

  4. Luca says:

    i was definitely scary… never had touched a gun and suddenly i had to shoot following the instruction given to me by a crazy welsh sniper. Damn that was great!

  5. Hilde says:

    Thanks for the great video Scott. And, even though you introduce the video by calling it the worst idea ever, I’m glad you all seemed to enjoy it. :-)

  6. Scott says:

    Hilde — that was before we actually fired the guns. I had visions of Dick Cheney dancing through my head. It turned out to be great fun. Thanks for the experience.

2 Pings/Trackbacks for "Academics Firing Guns"
  1. [...] This weekend’s workshop was amazing – the most productive and interesting academic event I’ve been to in a long time. Having a small group of researchers who are all writing from different perspectives on the same game, who know each other a little from playing the game together in a guild, who all have drafts of papers, who’ve read each others’ drafts and who are willing to authentically discuss ideas and structures and papers – well, that’s pretty wonderful. And we had some excellent extra-curricular activities as well: a raid on Astranaar in-game and experience with actually doing some of what we playact in the game off-game, as Scott documented in a brief movie. [...]

  2. [...] Actually I’m too tired to tell you all the great things that happened in Bergen. These have been great days with a lot of discussions on Word of Wacraft and something that I’ve never imagined it could happen to me [watch the video]. Thanks to Scott for the movie. [...]

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