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Live Action Role Playing and Engagement with Literature
Malmö University, Faculty of Culture and Society (KS), School of Arts and Communication (K3).
Malmö University, Faculty of Culture and Society (KS), Collaborative Future Making (CFM). Malmö University, Faculty of Culture and Society (KS), School of Arts and Communication (K3).
2023 (English)In: The Routledge Companion to Literary Media / [ed] Astrid Ensslin; Julia Round; Bronwen Thomas, Routledge, 2023, 1, p. 502-512Chapter in book (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The digital age has seen an unprecedented proliferation of literary content across different media, involving different audiences. As a consequence of this, scholars are directing their attention to how literature lives on beyond the book. While much of this research focuses on forms of intermediality, less attention has been given to embodied, participatory and interactive practices where literature is used in a variety of ways. In this chapter, we will discuss what happens to literature when it is used in physical, collaborative gameplay, focusing on live action role playing (larp), specifically larps in the Nordic tradition.

Since larp is located at the intersection of a number of different cultural expressions, we draw on scholarly work on gaming, performance, adaptation and participatory culture to discuss how literary material is used in three different larps, at which we have carried out fieldwork. Fortune and Felicity (2017) engaged with all of Jane Austen’s work, taking place over five days in period costume and setting. Located at the actual Elsinore Castle, Inside Hamlet (2017) adapted Shakespeare’s play to a revolutionary, decadent context. Using Thomas Vinterberg’s film The Celebration as the frame story, A Nice Evening With the Family (2018) thematised bourgeois family trauma through the use of a number of nineteenth-century Scandinavian plays, like Henrik Ibsen’s A Doll’s House.

Although thematically diverse, these larps raise common questions: What happens when a literary storyworld is materialised in embodied practices such as live action role playing? How can the unfolding story be understood collectively and individually and what storytelling mechanisms are used? What does it feel like to embody characters and actions from a work of fiction? By addressing these questions, this chapter highlights the intricate relation between literature and its collective embodiment in larp.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Routledge, 2023, 1. p. 502-512
Series
Routledge Literature Companions
Keywords [en]
Adaptation, Live-action role playing, Literary larps, Nordic larp, Participatory culture
National Category
General Literature Studies
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:mau:diva-62337DOI: 10.4324/9781003119739-45Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85170164774ISBN: 9780367635695 (print)ISBN: 9781003119739 (electronic)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:mau-62337DiVA, id: diva2:1794507
Available from: 2023-09-05 Created: 2023-09-05 Last updated: 2023-11-23Bibliographically approved

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Bjärstorp, SaraRagnerstam, Petra

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Citation style
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  • nn-NB
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