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Raising the Stakes: E-Sports and the Professionalization of Computer Gaming Hardcover – Mar 23 2012

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: The MIT Press (March 23 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0262017377
  • ISBN-13: 978-0262017374
  • Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 1.8 x 22.9 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 454 g
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #535,202 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description

About the Author

T. L. Taylor is Associate Professor in Comparative Media Studies at MIT. She is the author of Play Between Worlds: Exploring Online Game Culture (MIT Press).


The recent explosion in the popularity of competitive gaming lacks a
sufficient amount of documented history for people to truly appreciate just how far
professional video gaming has come. Finally, T.L. Taylor provides an amazing
perspective on eSports that will educate fans about a period of competitive play
that's nearly been forgotten. Forget what history you may know, this book gives you
the history you should know.

(Marcus "djWHEAT" Graham, Host and Executive Producer,

T.L. Taylor has been among the best analysts of the media we have had
over the past decade. Now she turns her exacting but always entertaining scrutiny to
e-sports, with all the power we have come to expect of a participant observer of the
highest order.

(Toby Miller, author of Makeover Nation)

In Raising the Stakes, T. L. Taylor does exactly what
the title promises by giving us the first serious academic take on the world of
competitive e-sports. She touches on every aspect of the new cyberathleticism,
always carefully balancing enthusiasm and skepticism.

(Henry Lowood, Curator for History of Science & Technology Collections,
Stanford University)

This book is about much more than the e-sports scene. T.L. Taylor uses
e-sports as a lens for looking at the confluence of social, cultural and
technological practices that are reshaping human interaction as digital culture at
both the local everyday level and at the broader level of global

(Bart Simon, Director of the Centre for Technoculture, Art and Games, Concordia
University, Montreal)

… Taylor has given us a great account of an exciting part of gaming

(Faltin Karlsen)

While Raising the Stakes fits neatly within the gaming
studies or media studies genres, it is also an exciting and novel contribution to
the growing body of work in what might be termed global technology

(Jenna Burrell Contemporary Sociology)

Raising the Stakes is a must not only for game
studies but also media and internet studies researchers as a wonderfully nuanced
study of century-first digital play-based in DIY, grassroots ideology-in the face of
burgeoning leisure commercialization. Play on.

(Game Studies)

Esports is a fascinating collision of new technology and culture with
traditional sports structure, and is a phenomenon that could only happen in the
present. There is a growing body of research around the growing esports phenomenon,
and this book provides a great primer into the academic perspective on the emerging
culture. In my opinion, this is the book to refer anyone to who is interested in
understanding esports -- for both newcomers and veterans.

(Timothy Young Day9)

Taylor's book is a valuable piece of scholarship that lays the groundwork
for further investigation into all aspects of video games as sport and players as

(Steve Jacobs American Journal of Play)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) HASH(0x9bdef51c) out of 5 stars 4 reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9bdd8df8) out of 5 stars I had to read a book about how society and sports are connected May 22 2014
By Grillz9909 - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I found this book out of desperation. I really wanted to write about the topic of e-sports and needed a good source. Wow. What a thorough book. It has so many citations and sources that I literally stopped reading the words in parenthesis (after a while).

It gives a great introduction to e-sports and backs up everything with facts and data. This book is just full of useful (and probably important) info on the gaming culture. However, I guess I just didn't entirely find the point of the book. It's basically like reading an encyclopedia on e-sports. If you're looking for great info- you've found it! If you're looking for an entertaining book with an agenda though, you won't be satisfied. BUT SERIOUSLY- this is like the go to book for this topic. I don't think there is a more thorough or well written book about it. Well done!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9be49a68) out of 5 stars Written with a bit of analytic and philosophical wit, Taylor covers various and important aspects of eSports Dec 15 2013
By Amazon Customer - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
'Written with a bit of analytic and philosophical wit, Taylor covers various and important aspects of eSports history, culture and what was needed to bring it all together.'

I've gone into reading this book with two minds: first, as a gamer and lover of eSports with several years experience in online tournament play; second, as a fourth year undergraduate student of philosophy. I would say that both my mind as a gamer and as a philosophy student were graciously satisfied in reading this book. If you're a fan of philosophy, particularly within the realm of game theory, then there's something for you in this book. If you're a fan of eSports, then there's something for you in this book.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9bf84e7c) out of 5 stars Well written and informative, great read Nov. 1 2014
By shops2much - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition
I was pulling e-sports research for my thesis when I came across this book as a recommended read from my university library. I am obsessed with Taylor's writing style, fully researched and documented facts, and ability to keep the reader's attention. She has years of research and experience which she conveys in an interesting easy read. This was a nice break from mundane text book research and poorly written blogs, articles. Love this author. Already searching for more of her works.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9be99648) out of 5 stars Great! Informational! June 1 2015
By Amazon Customer - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Provided an in-depth history and analysis of the evolution of e-sports, e-sports media, and business. While slightly out of date, (a lot of changes have happened since it was published) it still encapsulates some of the main fundamentals of e-sports and gaming culture.