Roger Caillois ur en narratologs perspektiv

Ulf Wilhelmsson


The classic work Les jeux et les hommes (2001/1958) by the French sociologist Roger Caillois is put in analytical relation to the fields of narratology and dramaturgy, mainly by a comparison to some thoughts and ideas in Mats Ödeen's Dramatiskt berättande (1988). The purpose is to highlight in what way Caillois's theory can be applied to the study of narratives and to identify analogies between narrations and games. The emphasis of the article is on a description of narratives based on Caillois's concept of game. Caillois's six criteria for game and play as process and phenomenon are systematically investigated: voluntarity, separation in time and space from ordinary life, unpredictability, improductivity, regulated by rules, and fictional. The article concludes that these parameters are valid definitional criteria for narratives as well.


action; computer games; drama; genre studies; ludology; narratology

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