The Legend of Zelda and Philosophy: I Link Therefore I Am (Popular Culture and Philosophy)

The Legend of Zelda and Philosophy: I Link Therefore I Am (Popular Culture and Philosophy)

Luke Cuddy

Language: English

Pages: 288

ISBN: 0812696549

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

The Legend of Zelda and Philosophy: I Link Therefore I Am (Popular Culture and Philosophy)

Luke Cuddy

Language: English

Pages: 288

ISBN: 0812696549

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub


With both young and adult gamers as loyal fans, The Legend of Zelda is one of the most beloved video game series ever created. The contributors to this volume consider the following questions and more: What is the nature of the gamer’s connection to Link? Does Link have a will, or do gamers project their wills onto him? How does the gamer experience the game? Do the rules of logic apply in the game world? How is space created and distributed in Hyrule (the fictional land in which the game takes place)? How does time function? Is Zelda art? Can Hyrule be seen as an ideal society? Can the game be enjoyable without winning? The Legend of Zelda and Philosophy not only appeals to Zelda fans and philosophers but also puts video games on the philosophical map as a serious area of study.

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fantastic vessel for philosophical inquiry. Zelda’s cultural and philosophical impact will likely be remembered long after society’s memory of game cartridges has gone a little hazy. Zelda and Philosophy 9/25/08 8:02 PM Page 63 Level 3 Don’t Get Manhandled by Manhandla— or . . . Mind-handled? Zelda and Philosophy 9/25/08 8:02 PM Page 64 Zelda and Philosophy 9/25/08 8:02 PM Page 65 6 Slave Morality and Master Swords: Ludus and Paidia in Zelda KRISTINA DRZAIC and PETER RAUCH K

won or lost falls into the realm of ludus, while a game with no such end condition can be thought of as paidia.3 Videogames, in practice, generally vary between ludus and paidia, both between texts and within them. In the videogame The Sims, for example, the player generates a neighborhood of simulated humans complete with homes, material possessions, careers, and emotions. Players manipulate the environment to change aspects of the simulation and strive for player-generated goals such as “own

game, however, his younger self learns how to use a boomerang. If the psychological account is correct, Link’s older self should have already known how to use a boomerang because he learned it when he was younger. The oddities of space and time, at least in Zelda and Philosophy 80 9/25/08 8:02 PM Page 80 Rachel Robison Ocarina of Time, make it difficult to apply the psychological continuity account of personal identity. There are also accounts that are hybrids of these two views. Some

deviation from the familiar. The structures of the songs also disrupt the familiar, especially the repetition that constitutes the Song of Zelda and Philosophy 9/25/08 8:02 PM Page 131 Three Days in Termina 131 Double Time. Bennett and Royle argue that “the uncanny involves, above all, strange kinds of repetition: repetition of a feeling, situation, event or character” and note the “idea of the double” as being one form this repetition can take. The idea of time being double not only

apparent paradox. A common view is that when we watch fictional stories we perform a mental activity we call “the willing suspension of disbelief,” a phrase first used in 1817 by the poet Samuel Taylor Coleridge.1 According to this theory, we have emotional responses to Wind Waker because we temporarily believe in its reality. Once we suspend our disbelief, we forget that the Boko Baba we are looking at is not a real carnivorous plant. This view is sometimes called the illusion theory because it

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