Growing Up Gamer Girl


Image: Samuel Deats

Are you a gamer girl? Maddy Myers is, and she wrote an interesting article over at The Phoenix about growing up playing video games against boys: the violence, the sexism, the gender politics ...

So, this question still troubles me: why do I enjoy Counter-Strike, Call of Duty, Gears of War, Power Rangers, and even Fight Club? All of these games and movies and TV shows indoctrinate us all with the idea of what "masculine" means, by showing men (and a token "special" woman, or two) on the battlefield. Shouldn't I hate these reinforcements of those gender demarcations, as a liberal/progressive feminist/gender egalitarian/bleeding heart/whatever? Shouldn't I hate violence anyway, even just depictions of violence, since — gender-role indoctrination aside — violent media keeps enforcing the narrative that hurting other people is okay, and maybe even cool and fun?

I know that many of my female friends can't find anything to relate to in these games, that I am still a little "weird," a little "special" for enjoying violent video games and power fantasies. Especially since most of my friends are also progressives, feminists, gender egalitarians, people fighting the good fight against the sort of crap that I'm not "supposed" to keep on liking if I want to roll with them: the fetishization of gun violence, of masculine-oriented violent behaviors, of violence apologists.

And yet, here I am, engaging in a power fantasy and loving it.

Is there something wrong with me?

Read the rest over at The Phoenix: Link

Lastly, hats off to Samuel Deats (deviantARTist poojipoo) who created the fantastic art above.


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WordyGrrl. Yes, that's a valid "female gamers' concern". In fact, that's a valid concern for gamers male and female - a more realistic assortment and portrayal of characters, as well as the old stereotypes.
Gaming companies aren't just slapping big boobs on a Lara Croft type and saying, "Finished!" any more.
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As somebody who's been gaming for more than 30 years, I'm really to see games coming out that don't have "muscular, white male" as only choice of protagonist/player. Gaming companies are just starting to come around that "20-something white men" aren't the ONLY people playing these games. In fact, gamer ages are closer to 30/40-something, and female players make up a large population of that crowd.
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kkirkpat. I wasn't brushing off gender role/stereotype issues in the gaming world, but in the media overall. What concerns did this article address? The fact that she felt she had to justify playing violent video games to her feminist friends, or some such.
Is that worthy of attention? It's not my concern. Maybe there was something particularly memorable in the piece, but it I didn't notice it. Sorry, but I have an opinion, too. Sandi has an opinion, too (before it was deleted, his comment was a lot stronger than mine, but not altogether inaccurate). I don't think Neatorama readers' minds are that fragile, that they can't be subjected to differing opinions. Just because I say something is lame, doesn't mean it has to be lame - but I'm usually right.
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Ted, perhaps you should consider that so many people write about gender roles and defying stereotypes in the gaming world because it is a common experience for female gamers. Brushing off these concerns as "typical" just helps reinforce the idea that female gamers' concerns aren't worthy of attention.
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Now there's a picture full of innuendo. Does anyone really hold a controller like that? ;)
Honestly, I tried reading the article, but it got too typical. There's a monotonously bland sameness about people who write about examining gender roles and defying stereotypes.
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