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The Procedural Rhetoric of War: Ideology, Recruitment, and Training in Military Videogames

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The Procedural Rhetoric of War: Ideology, Recruitment, and Training in Military Videogames

Demers, David (2014) The Procedural Rhetoric of War: Ideology, Recruitment, and Training in Military Videogames. Masters thesis, Concordia University.

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Abstract

In light of the increasing popularity of military-themed videogames, as well as the U.S. military’s substantial investment in both the development and consultation of such games, there exist very pertinent questions regarding the effects that this particular media has over its consumers. Although this topic has been previously examined using official military serious games, largely absent in the literature is the study of entertainment-based videogames. In this thesis, I investigate the relationship between the military and videogame culture. In particular, I explore how recruitment, training, and ideology are promoted by the military through the design and production of both educational and recreational games. I apply theories of game/play, procedural rhetoric, and discourse analysis to videogames to determine the precise mechanisms behind the medium’s effectiveness as an implement for neomilitarism. I also demonstrate how the videogame industry is both theoretically and aesthetically intertwined with that of the film industry. Using the America’s Army and Call of Duty franchises as case studies, the results show that, while there exists notable procedural differences between serious and entertainment videogames, both categories effectively contribute to the military’s mission of fostering potential recruits among the young male demographic.

Divisions:Concordia University > Faculty of Fine Arts > Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema
Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Authors:Demers, David
Institution:Concordia University
Degree Name:M.A.
Program:Film Studies
Date:15 April 2014
Thesis Supervisor(s):Steinberg, Marc
Keywords:Military, video games, ideology, recruitment, training, neomilitarism, FPS, first-person shooter, Call of Duty, America's Army, procedural rhetoric, military media convergence
ID Code:978449
Deposited By: DAVID DEMERS
Deposited On:26 Jun 2014 20:47
Last Modified:18 Jan 2018 17:46

References:

Demers, David. "The Procedural Rhetoric of War: Ideology, Recruitment, and Training in Military Videogames." MA Thesis. Concordia University, Montreal, 2014. Print.
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