Play has often been snubbed as a serious research topic. The combination of its supposed uselessness and its association with the world of childhood has led to a general lack of reflection about play on the part of high culture. Nevertheless, play experience is symbolic, polysemic, ambivalent, laden with affect and a potential generator of contradictory and transformative knowledge (Huizinga, 1980; Fink, 1987, 1992; Suits, 1978). Due to its rich variety of expression and multiple meanings, it eludes the rigorous conceptualizations and reductionism favoured by contemporary mainstream educational science, which views play mainly as a teaching aid or as an opportunity for socialization, culturalization, transmission of contents or as a means of furthering linguistic, cognitive or affective development. When we speak about the relationship between playing and childhood, we have to go beyond the real and concrete child, and also go beyond a univocal kind of game - as symbolic play. Although we expose ourselves to the risk of considering playing an important but limited activity, that has to be abandoned in favour of growing up, to evolve activity in more useful ways. But play is linked to the world of childhood in a deeper way, where childhood is understood as an archetypical dimension (Hillman 1988, 1999; Bachelard 1960), as an age which is not only biological, but represents the most imaginative season of life, mainly characterized by wonder and excitement about the world. Childhood is the season in which reality is not analysed, categorized or divided into disciplines, but is seen as a wonderful and fantastic playroom, viewed with passion and understood at a deep symbolic level. In this sense artists, poets, visionaries, dreamers such as players and gamers, nurture a symbolic childhood gaze, open to understanding Play as a fundamental experience for the development of human capabilities. In the chapter I will argue how this is possible, supported by philosophers, anthropologists, educators.

Antonacci, F. (2017). Puer ludens. A poetic gaze on Play. In M. Poulsen, K. Langham, Z. Buter, Z. Wood, A. Moseley, D. Tomlinson, et al. (a cura di), The power of play - Voices from the Play Community (pp. 129-139). Aarhus : ScandinavianBook.

Puer ludens. A poetic gaze on Play

ANTONACCI, FRANCESCA
2017

Abstract

Play has often been snubbed as a serious research topic. The combination of its supposed uselessness and its association with the world of childhood has led to a general lack of reflection about play on the part of high culture. Nevertheless, play experience is symbolic, polysemic, ambivalent, laden with affect and a potential generator of contradictory and transformative knowledge (Huizinga, 1980; Fink, 1987, 1992; Suits, 1978). Due to its rich variety of expression and multiple meanings, it eludes the rigorous conceptualizations and reductionism favoured by contemporary mainstream educational science, which views play mainly as a teaching aid or as an opportunity for socialization, culturalization, transmission of contents or as a means of furthering linguistic, cognitive or affective development. When we speak about the relationship between playing and childhood, we have to go beyond the real and concrete child, and also go beyond a univocal kind of game - as symbolic play. Although we expose ourselves to the risk of considering playing an important but limited activity, that has to be abandoned in favour of growing up, to evolve activity in more useful ways. But play is linked to the world of childhood in a deeper way, where childhood is understood as an archetypical dimension (Hillman 1988, 1999; Bachelard 1960), as an age which is not only biological, but represents the most imaginative season of life, mainly characterized by wonder and excitement about the world. Childhood is the season in which reality is not analysed, categorized or divided into disciplines, but is seen as a wonderful and fantastic playroom, viewed with passion and understood at a deep symbolic level. In this sense artists, poets, visionaries, dreamers such as players and gamers, nurture a symbolic childhood gaze, open to understanding Play as a fundamental experience for the development of human capabilities. In the chapter I will argue how this is possible, supported by philosophers, anthropologists, educators.
Capitolo o saggio
Play, Education, Symbolic gaze, Imagination
English
The power of play - Voices from the Play Community
978-87-999752-0-4
Antonacci, F. (2017). Puer ludens. A poetic gaze on Play. In M. Poulsen, K. Langham, Z. Buter, Z. Wood, A. Moseley, D. Tomlinson, et al. (a cura di), The power of play - Voices from the Play Community (pp. 129-139). Aarhus : ScandinavianBook.
Antonacci, F
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/10281/151355
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