A striking metaphor in a book review in the N.Y. Times: Does it bode a mainstreaming of video-game culture?

A line in a book review published in this past Tuesday’s New York Times made me realize how mainstream video-games are gradually becoming, as the reviewer used a pretty arresting gaming metaphor to make a point. (The book in question was: Harlem is Nowhere: A Journey to the Mecca of Black America, by Sharifa Rhodes-Pitts, and it has nothing to do with video games.) Coining the phrase “first-person thinker” by way of analogy with “first-person shooter”, the reviewer wrote:

You climb inside her [the author’s] skull as if this book were a first-person thinker video game: Call of Duty: Memoir Academy. Ms. Rhodes-Pitts makes her meta-processes part of this story.

Ten years ago, such a line in a mainstream book review would have been quite unthinkable, I believe. Perhaps this mainstreaming of video games, as it penetrates even the higher reaches of literary culture (as shown in this line from a book review in such a venerable newspaper as the New York Times), bodes well for the eventual acceptance of the video-game metaphor in mainstream circles, including education policy?

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