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Fri, 4 Nov ’11

Anthropology Lecture Casts Illumination Spell on World of Warcraft

Now you can say you are studying as you play MMORPGs for hours on end.

The humble MMORPG genre is a time sucker of the highest order. You always need to grind out just one more level, obtain one more precious sword, then you’ll see what your newborn is crying about. These worlds do not exist to just get you divorced and fired, though. Some of them feature robust economies and social dynamics that often say a lot about our real, ogre-less world. If the economic realities of goldfarming interests you, then have a mage portal you to this illuminating lecture.

Virtual Humanity: The Anthropology of Online Worlds is part of a series of lectures that tackle being human in the 21st century. Nothing captures the strange dichotomy of being alive today more than online gaming. These games offer a sense of shared accomplishment and community without ever having to leave your bedroom. As such, the rules of each title vary depending on who plays it. People make the world, after all. Thomas M. Malaby, a Second Life historian, and Lee T. Guzofski, the developer of a secret forthcoming title, will be leading the lecture. Come prepared with any issues you want discussed, but take caution not to seem like a newb. Online gamers hate that. 

Sharpen your Ashbringer on November 9th at the New York Academy of Sciences. That is, assuming you can tear yourself away from your Star Wars: The Old Republic beta for ninety minutes.