Doing Gender in Cyberspace: -the performance of gender by female World of Warcraft players
2011 (English)In: Convergence. The International Journal of Research into New Media Technologies, ISSN 1354-8565, E-ISSN 1748-7382, Vol. 17, no 3, 323-342 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
This explorative study focuses on the performance of gender and sexuality in World of Warcraft (WoW), an online game, following Butler’s performance theory. Through interviews with female WoW players, gender and sexuality is analysed. The article argues that we cannot study gender online without also looking at sexuality. Gender performances are discussed within the framework of four themes: the avatar; strategies; sexuality, and the contextual importance of WoW. Results show that gender identity construction in WoW is an ongoing process highly dependent on the social context of play. The women interviewed created gendered and sexualized identities constrained and empowered by the rules of the game and the opportunities it offers as well as of their social relations. Although a heterosexual norm rules, there are possibilities hitherto unrecognized for queer performance within the gendered role play in WoW and the game offers the possibility of multiple and alternative performances of the self.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2011. Vol. 17, no 3, 323-342 p.
gender identity, MMORPG, performative sexuality, social context, World of Warcraft
Research subject Sociology
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-65337DOI: 10.1177/1354856511406472OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-65337DiVA: diva2:462529
ProjectsMMORPG - samhällsproblem eller framtidsliv?