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Machinima – Socio-Cultural Disturbance

Tracy Gaynor Harwood, De Montfort University and Ben Grussi

ISBN: 978-1-62273-273-9
Availability: Forthcoming

Since its birth in 1996, machinima (machine-cinema) has grown into a truly global phenomenon – and its latest transformation is evident in the Lets Play community. Machinima is the first digital culture to have emerged from the internet into a mainstream creative genre and it has taken shape as an important fan culture. Its impact has been felt across many aspects of popular culture and its influence can be found in contexts such as the arts and cinema, performance, creative technologies and social media, politics and citizenship. This book traces its history and impacts through a selection of the most culturally significant works. It firstly sets out to describe the key films, provides an overview of the creative processes and interviews with filmmakers and contributors involved in their development. It then traces their release and impact among fans, users and appropriators, supported with material and interviews. This important new work focuses on the specific disruptive socio-cultural impacts of key works identified by the community and Harwood research over a period of 10 years – from film and filmmaking to digital arts, practice and theory. The book will be of interest to machinima researchers and practitioners, including game culture, media theorists and digital artists, and those interested in how creative technologies influences communities of practice over time.

Finding Peaks and Valleys in a Flat World

Goodness, Truth, and Meaning in the Midst of Today’s Mad Chase for Prosperity and Instant Feedback

Mark Ellingsen, Interdenominational Theological Center

November 2020 / ISBN: 978-1-64889-108-3
Availability: In stock
90pp. ¦ $29 £22 €25

The flat world of our globalized economic order—with its information technology mandating the need for the labor force to compete globally—has led to turmoil, injustice, and growing unhappiness in our everyday lives. We need a way to find some mountaintops and fulfillment in our flat world, to have a sense that some moments can have eternal significance. Søren Kierkegaard, forerunner of Existentialism, provides us with a vision of life to help us cope and give us joy. Along the way, we’ll see how a lot of his insights connect with cutting-edge findings on brain research about the biological dynamics of joy and fulfillment. Finding Peaks and Valleys in a Flat World will be of interest to undergraduate Philosophy and Religion students as well as Kierkegaard specialists. It will also be a good reference work for people interested in social analyses and theologians of every denominational affiliation.

118 Theories of Design(ing)

Edited by Paul A. Rodgers, University of Strathclyde, UK and Craig Bremner, Charles Sturt University, Australia

November 2020 / ISBN: 978-1-62273-962-2
Availability: In stock
306pp. ¦ $63 £48 €54

Theories normally seek to explain something. 118 Theories of Design[ing] asks us to question those explanations. By focusing on a broad range of somewhat overlooked and undervalued essays, papers, book articles, words, terms, authors and phenomena that swirl around design[ing], the reader is encouraged to read, reflect and question everything. This original book will appeal to a global market of university faculty heads and deans, museum directors, design educators, design researchers, key design practitioners, publishers, members of the design media, and undergraduate, postgraduate and post-doctoral students of design.

Love as human virtue and human need and its role in the lives of long-term prisoners

A multidisciplinary exploration

Christina Valeska Straub, University of Leeds

November 2020 / ISBN: 978-1-62273-966-0
Availability: In stock
238pp. ¦ $62 £46 €52

While the importance of love is rarely questioned, the effects of its presence and absence in certain environments often goes unnoticed. This book analyses the role of love in the lives of prisoners in a low security English prison. It seeks to provide a deeper insight into the meaning and role of love as a dual concept in the social-ecology of human existence, human development and well-being, and sets out to encourage a critical and practical (re)consideration of the potential benefits of love´s (re)inclusion into the prison set-up and purpose. This qualitative multidisciplinary analysis – based on psychological, moral philosophical, neuroscientific, and sociological literature – will appeal to postgraduates and early career researchers across the social sciences, as well practitioners of Criminal Justice and others interested in offender rehabilitation, and the effects of prison.

Complex Society: In the Middle of a Middle World

Bojan Radej, Slovenian Evaluation Society, Slovenia and Mojca Golobič, University of Ljubljana; Slovenian Evaluation Society, Slovenia

November 2020 / ISBN: 978-1-64889-019-2
Availability: In stock
240pp. ¦ $60 £45 €51

The decreasing capacity to govern complex social processes results in negative trends that breach system thresholds in all main social domains with extreme economic stratification of society. Independent studies steadily report that a strong majority of the world’s population, between 60% and 80%, already feels excluded and no longer represented by their governments. The two prevailing concepts of complexity seem to overlook the central importance of mesoscopic complexity. Socially complex conditions call for a new kind of social thought specifically developed for a blinded generation that must be as different from modern and postmodern thoughts, as they were different from their middle-age precedents. 'Complex Society: In the Middle of a Middle World', addresses the concerns of the excluded majority by explaining how present complex social conditions work in favor of generational aspirations to achieve a more positive future. In the geometry of thinking, a complex matter is not comprehensible objectively, but only by evaluating overlaps between complexity domains on their periphery, which is in the area of their inconsistencies. The book first develops an evaluative methodology for studying complex social matters and then tests it with three case studies that reflect some of the most pressing problems in contemporary societies: aggregation problem, integration problem, and organization problem. The obtained findings give grounds for the depiction of an outline for the ‘anti-postmodern’ ordering of contemporary societies. This ground-breaking text will be of particular interest for graduate and post-graduate level of social sciences, evaluators of project, program and policy impact evaluation, evaluators of philosophy of science, as well as methodologists of social research and public governance.

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