The Website of Dr. Evan Torner

  • Losing Friends and the Stories We Tell Ourselves: Just a Little Lovin’ Denmark 2015

    “Hat ein einziges [Werk] seinen Zweck erreicht? Haben sie das Rad aufhalten können, das unaufhaltsam stürzend seinem Abgrund entgegeneilt?” –– Heinrich von Kleist When we finish a book, exit a movie theater, let the record needle hit the center label, we might ask ourselves: What did this experience mean? Am I moved? Did the work […]

  • The Digital Baroque and Recent Mainstream Cinema

    [This post constitutes me thinking out loud in a forum not as ephemeral as social media. If you want to start a fight, the comments here or elsewhere would not be the place to do it. E-mail me instead.] In 2008, this scholar Timothy Murray published a book on the “digital baroque,” in which he’s arguing for […]

  • Open Letter To Save German Language Education in the Iowa City Schools

    As a German instructor and an alumnus of the Iowa City School District (’00), I feel obliged to post this open letter of protest against the closing of the German program in the Iowa City Schools.   April 11, 2014 Dear Superintendent Stephen Murley and the Board of the Iowa City School District,   We […]

  • Gedankenspiel III: The Facebook

    After being carefully steered through our existence by others, it should come as no surprise that we are granted legitimacy only as nodes of a social network much larger than ourselves. Facebook is what you might call a vulgar expression of that network, a vast human information-gathering service that interpenetrates business, art, personal, and public […]

  • American Freeform: A Transatlantic Dialog

    Quiet waves of change have rippled through the role-playing community. On Monday of this week, Lizzie Stark posted an introduction to American freeform on her blog, an entry that codified design practices we’ve been using here in the States since at least the middle of the 00s. As one of the numerous designers whose work she listed, […]

  • Immersive Gameplay – Interview with Katherine Castiello Jones

    Katherine Castiello Jones talks about Gary Alan Fine and his legacy on role-playing game studies.

  • Gedankenspiel II: The iPhone

    How ephemeral is that which we type with our thumbs? And if it’s so ephemeral, why do we commit so many moments of our limited lives to entering such text? Importance itself, so it seems, has been awarded too much importance. Ever wonder how, for example, Coca-Cola possesses so much clout in the world? Remember […]

  • Gedankenspiel I: The Pen

    [I have written a series of blog posts on paper entitled “Gedankenspiel” that I am entering verbatim into WordPress. The thought is that I write differently by hand than via computer.] I. The pen is not only mightier than the sword, it’s mightier than the COMPUTER. When I confront my students with the task of […]

  • Immersive Gameplay – Interview with Evan Torner

    In honor of the release of Bill White’s and my co-edited volume with McFarland, Immersive Gameplay: Essays on Role-Playing and Participatory Media, I am conducting interviews with some of my talented and erudite contributors. The eighth interview is with myself, Evan Torner, conducted by my co-editor Bill White. In addition to co-editing the book and […]

  • Immersive Gameplay – Interview with Nathan Hook

    In honor of the release of Bill White’s and my co-edited volume with McFarland, Immersive Gameplay: Essays on Role-Playing and Participatory Media, I am conducting interviews with some of my talented and erudite contributors. The seventh interview is with role-playing designer and writer Nathan Hook. His article “Circles and Frames: The Games Social Scientists Play,” […]

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