Graduation Year

2016

Graduation Month

December

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts

School or Department

Sociology

Major

Sociology – Inequality and Social Justice

Faculty Mentor

Daisy Rooks

Faculty Mentor Department

Sociology

Keywords

Tabletop gaming, gender, empowering, gender rolls, Dungeons and Dragons

Subject Categories

Sociology of Culture

Abstract

In this article, the author examines the gendered experiences of twelve women who play Dungeons and Dragons, a popular roleplaying tabletop game. The author utilizes Peter Berger and Thomas Luckmann’s concept of the excursion to analyze how participants use roleplay in Dungeons and Dragons to achieve empowerment. Many of the women interviewed described being subjected to gendered behavioral expectations both in their everyday life and during gameplay. With an empowering gaming group, however, roleplay allowed the participants to challenge, and subvert, those gendered expectations. The author concludes that roleplay provides an empowering excursion from everyday life that allows women participants to deal with frustration about gendered treatment and challenge institutional gender roles.

Honors College Research Project

Yes

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© Copyright 2016 Rachel M. Just