Larp & “Bleed:” Immersion and Learning in Fantastic Spaces

Talk on live action role-play and “bleed” (transfer of knowledge and emotions between character and player) at the Kyoto International Manga Museum (2016/06/18).

This talk is part of an international symposium on “Directions of Manga Culture Research” featuring talks on narrativity, gender,  games and fan culture. The event is in Japanese only.

Date & Time2016/6/18 (Sat) 13:00~17:30
PlaceKyoto Manga Museum, 1st floor Multipurpose AV-Hall

Topic of my talk:

Live Action Role-Play & “Bleed:” Immersion and Learning in Fantastic Spaces

Theories of escapism and youth alienation still have considerable impact on discourses about the narrative genre of “fantasy” in various media, ranging from literature to anime and manga as well as games. In contrast, game designers, educators, and political activists have begun to employ fantasy for educational purposes and awareness raising. For example, recent projects about social issues, such as obesity, or about everyday life in an oppressive military state, attract much attention. The learning effects educators are seeking have been named “bleed” in role-playing theory.

In this talk I discuss learning from fantasy with the example of live action role-play (larp). The focus lies on “bleed” and its companion concept “immersion,” which favours such transfer of knowledge or emotions between players and characters. Larp emerged as a recreational and entertainment practice in the 1990s and allows people to experience other worlds through a combination of improv-theatre, shared storytelling and game elements (such as rules and challenges).