Managing Hearts with Kim and Flo

An essay on casual games and affective labor for The New Inquiry

Kim and Flo

Games offer a way to simulate and view complex systems from the outside, to pick them up and play with them as a child might play with a toy machine, to understand what they are able to do and where they are broken. The process of coming to understand the levers and gears of a game—what game designer and theorist Ian Bogost calls a game’s “procedural rhetoric”—is an opportunity for cognitive estrangement from familiar systems of labor, a way to understand dynamic networks and nuanced relations with a fresh set of eyes.

Read the full essay here.

This was an adaptation of my undergraduate thesis, which was published in the Chicago Journal of Sociology and can be accessed here.