This edited collection explores the roles of material culture in socializing young people through their play. Authors explore notions of play from diverse cultural viewpoints, as well as the impact of technology on play, and the kinds of resistant and liberatory play children might partake in. Informed by the field of performance studies, the book considers play as performance, asking questions about embodiment at physical, relational, and ideological levels, and considering «performance» to be part of identity construction, as well as a component of enculturation into various societies. Of interest are the ways in which children try on various identities through their play, and how these identities may (re)define their attitudes, values, and beliefs.
As curriculum and instruction have become open to the use of games – and children’s material culture more generally – as a forum for learning, intersections have emerged between schooling and culture at large. This book broadens the scope of «learning» to investigate how these cultural artifacts are open or closed to multiple perspectives and narratives, as well as how their use is constituted both in and out of the classroom.