Bo Ruberg At the Crossroads Video Online Now

13 Oct, 2020

Bo Ruberg At the Crossroads Video Online Now

This September, Bo Ruberg, a BCNM alum and current assistant professor in Film and Media Studies at UC Irvine, delivered a talk on their work at the "At the Crossroads" online conference. In the lecture, Bo describes the intersection of queerness and games and focuses on the concept of queer games avant-garde as introduced in her new book "The Queer Games Avant-Garde: How LGBTQ Game Makers are Reimagining the Medium of Video Games". Bo defines queer games avant-garde as a network of queer and trangender game developers at the forefront of contemporary (video) game design. Following this definition, the book features a collection of around twenty-five interviews and profiles with LGBTQ+ identifying independent game makers and designers who explicitly bring their experiences of gender, sexuality, and identity into their work. Through these interviews, Bo develops the following themes:

1. Contrary to popular belief, queer games avant-garde resists empathy and questions audience.

2. The queer games avant-garde explores and embraces intimacy.

3. The queer games avant-garde draws from personal, embodied experience.

4. The queer games avant-garde understands design itself as queer.

With video games becoming a medium for emotion, social change, and politically radical artistic expression, Bo argues that whether we recognize it or not, this medium is changing because of queer and trans people - they are at the forefront of this shift. Rather than solely focusing on the gameplay itself, Bo goes beyond the "diversity" narrative and centers on amplifying the voices of the marginalized people making these games.

For more, check out the whole video here!