x + 318 pages
Dungeons and Dragons and Philosophy
Raiding the Temple of Wisdom
Edited by Jon Cogburn and Mark Silcox
Volume 70 in the Popular Culture and Philosophy® series
Every day, in a quest for a truer reality, myriads of groups of the brightest and most creative minds gather around tabletops the world over, equipped with miniature figures, many-sided dice, maps, and rule books.
The Dungeon Master intones the setting, and the epic game is afoot, the shared story has begun, with no one knowing where it’s headed, or what triumphs, heartaches, and illuminations it will bring.
In Dungeons & Dragons and Philosophy, for the first time, professional thinkers who are also role-playing veterans answer some of the deeper questions about D&D: why it’s morally okay to play evil characters, what separates science from magic, and how it can be that the explosion of D&D is “the most exciting event in modern mass culture since the invention of the motion picture.”
“If you ever played D&D there’s a chance you’ll dig this book. For everyone else, here’s your chance to get some of what you missed and discover you probably weren’t actually ‘above all that’.”
— David Gerding, game developer and Professor of Interactive Media at Columbia College
“There are twenty-one sides to Cogburn and Silcox’s brilliant die, and each one rolls up an epic adventure. Turns out that all that time in our basements, surrounded by our pewter miniatures, we were (and are) immersed in some deeply philosophical quests touching on metaphysics, ethics, and aesthetics.”
—David R. Koepsell, author of Who Owns You? The Corporate Gold Rush to Patent Your Genes
Jon Cogburn is Associate Professor of Philosophy at Louisiana State University. He served as a founding member of Louisiana State University's AVATAR (Arts, Visualization, Advanced Technologies and Research) initiative. He is co-author of Philosophy Through Video Games (2008). Mark Silcox is Associate Professor of Humanities and Philosophy at the University of Central Oklahoma. He has worked as a freelance writer and designer in the video game industry. He is co-author of Philosophy Through Video Games (2008).