Annotation of “Digital literacies: Video games and digital literacies” Steinkuelher (2010)

Annotation of “Digital literacies: Video games and digital literacies” Steinkuelher (2010)

Steinkuelher, C. (2010). Digital literacies: Video games and digital literacies. Journal of Adolescent & Adult Literacy, 54(1), 61-63.

Steinkuelher’s article explores the role that video games, despite their ethos of sex, stereotyping, and violence, play in digital literacy. She argues that youth is entrenched by information, of which video games are a small part and by better understanding the way meaning is created, we can see how video games support digital literacy.

Two important perspectives of video games are: first, video games epitomize narrative practice, and second, they help players move from the individual to the community. When an individual plays a game, they are in the process of constructing a narrative. They make choices and participate in cause-effect relationships. And they do not do so entirely alone. Video games have an ever-expanding discourse community. From video game fan sites to collaborative game play, gone are the days of the individual alone in their room with a controller.

While Steinkuelher’s work seems to embark on a successful appeal for video games as a learning tool, her work relies abhorrently on generalization. Her claim that English class is the female domain whereas video games are the play space of boys and young men undercuts her credibility as a writer. Additionally, the example she discusses suggests that students characterize educators as sexist and uncaring because they challenge students with more traditional texts and textbooks. Overall, her work relies on selective details and makes sweeping generalizations about students and their perceptions of learning. She provides little relevant research about the issue she addresses at the start of her work.

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