Role-playing

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Role-playing is the changing of one's behaviour to assume a role, either unconsciously to fill a social role, or consciously to act out an adopted role. While the Oxford English Dictionary offers a definition of role-playing as "the changing of one's behaviour to fulfill a social role", [1] in the field of psychology, the term is used more loosely in four senses:

A role is a set of connected behaviors, rights, obligations, beliefs, and norms as conceptualized by people in a social situation. It is an expected or free or continuously changing behaviour and may have a given individual social status or social position. It is vital to both functionalist and interactionist understandings of society. Social role posits the following about social behaviour:

  1. The division of labour in society takes the form of the interaction among heterogeneous specialised positions, we call roles.
  2. Social roles included appropriate and permitted forms of behaviour and actions that recur in a group, guided by social norms, which are commonly known and hence determine the expectations for appropriate behaviour in these roles, which further explains the place of a person in the society.
  3. Roles are occupied by individuals, who are called actors.
  1. When individuals approve of a social role, they will incur costs to conform to role norms, and will also incur costs to punish those who violate role norms.
  2. Changed conditions can render a social role outdated or illegitimate, in which case social pressures are likely to lead to role change.
  3. The anticipation of rewards and punishments, as well as the satisfaction of behaving prosocially, account for why agents conform to role requirements.
Acting impersonation of a fictional character

Acting is an activity in which a story is told by means of its enactment by an actor or actress who adopts a character—in theatre, television, film, radio, or any other medium that makes use of the mimetic mode.

<i>Oxford English Dictionary</i> Premier historical dictionary of the English language

The Oxford English Dictionary (OED) is the principal historical dictionary of the English language, published by Oxford University Press (OUP). It traces the historical development of the English language, providing a comprehensive resource to scholars and academic researchers, as well as describing usage in its many variations throughout the world. The second edition, comprising 21,728 pages in 20 volumes, was published in 1989.

Contents

A role-playing video game is a video game genre where the player controls the actions of a character immersed in some well-defined world. Many role-playing video games have origins in tabletop role-playing games and use much of the same terminology, settings and game mechanics. Other major similarities with pen-and-paper games include developed story-telling and narrative elements, player character development, complexity, as well as replayability and immersion. The electronic medium removes the necessity for a gamemaster and increases combat resolution speed. RPGs have evolved from simple text-based console-window games into visually rich 3D experiences.

Play-by-mail games, or play-by-post games, are games, of any type, played through postal mail or email.

Amusement

Many children participate in a form of role-playing known as make believe, wherein they adopt certain roles such as doctor and act out those roles in character. Sometimes make believe adopts an oppositional nature, resulting in games such as cops and robbers.

Make believe, also known as pretend play, is a loosely structured form of play that generally includes role-play, object substitution and nonliteral behavior. What separates play from other daily activities is its fun and creative aspect rather than being an action performed for the sake of survival or necessity. Children engage in make believe for a number of reasons. It provides the child with a safe setting to express fears and desires. When children participate in pretend play, they are integrating and strengthening previously acquired knowledge. Children who have better pretense and fantasy abilities also show better social competence, cognitive capabilities, and an ability to take the perspective of others. In order for the activity to be referred to as pretend play, the individual must be intentionally diverting from reality. The individual must be aware of the contrast between the real situation and the make believe situation. If the child believes that the make believe situation is reality, then he/she is misinterpreting the situation rather than pretending. Pretend may or may not include action, depending on whether the child chooses to project their imagination onto reality or not.

Physician professional who practices medicine

A physician, medical practitioner, medical doctor, or simply doctor, is a professional who practises medicine, which is concerned with promoting, maintaining, or restoring health through the study, diagnosis, prognosis and treatment of disease, injury, and other physical and mental impairments. Physicians may focus their practice on certain disease categories, types of patients, and methods of treatment—known as specialities—or they may assume responsibility for the provision of continuing and comprehensive medical care to individuals, families, and communities—known as general practice. Medical practice properly requires both a detailed knowledge of the academic disciplines, such as anatomy and physiology, underlying diseases and their treatment—the science of medicine—and also a decent competence in its applied practice—the art or craft of medicine.

Tag (game) game of chasing other people

Tag, also called it, tiggy, tig,tick or chasey, or touch and go, is a playground game that involves two or more players chasing other players in an attempt to "tag" or touch them, usually with their hands. There are many variations; most forms have no teams, scores, or equipment. Usually when a person is tagged, the tagger says, "Tag, you're 'it'!".The last one tagged during tag is "it" for the next round.

Entertainment

Historical re-enactment has been practiced by adults for millennia. The ancient Romans, Han Chinese, and medieval Europeans all enjoyed occasionally organizing events in which everyone pretended to be from an earlier age, and entertainment appears to have been the primary purpose of these activities. Within the 20th century historical re-enactment has often been pursued as a hobby.

Hobby regular activity that is done for enjoyment

A hobby is a regular activity done for enjoyment, typically during one's leisure time, not professionally and not for pay. Hobbies include collecting themed items and objects, engaging in creative and artistic pursuits, playing sports, or pursuing other amusements. Participation in hobbies encourages acquiring substantial skills and knowledge in that area. A list of hobbies changes with renewed interests and developing fashions, making it diverse and lengthy. Hobbies tend to follow trends in society, for example stamp collecting was popular during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries as postal systems were the main means of communication, while video games are more popular nowadays following technological advances. The advancing production and technology of the nineteenth century provided workers with more availability in leisure time to engage in hobbies. Because of this, the efforts of people investing in hobbies has increased with time.

Improvisational theatre dates back to the Commedia dell'Arte tradition of the 16th century. Modern improvisational theatre began in the classroom with the "theatre games" of Viola Spolin and Keith Johnstone in the 1950s. Viola Spolin, who was one of the founders the famous comedy troupe Second City, insisted that her exercises were games, and that they involved role-playing as early as 1946. She accurately judged role-playing in the theatre as rehearsal and actor training, or the playing of the role of actor versus theatre roles, but many now use her games for fun in their own right.

Improvisational theatre theatrical genre

Improvisational theatre, often called improvisation or improv, is the form of theatre, often comedy, in which most or all of what is performed is unplanned or unscripted: created spontaneously by the performers. In its purest form, the dialogue, action, story, and characters are created collaboratively by the players as the improvisation unfolds in present time, without use of an already prepared, written script.

The theatre games tradition is a method of training actors that was developed in the 20th century by practitioners such as Joan Littlewood, Viola Spolin, Paul Sills, Clive Barker, Keith Johnstone, Jerzy Grotowski and Augusto Boal. Theatre games are also commonly used as warm-up exercises for actors before a rehearsal or performance, in the development of improvisational theatre, and as a lateral means to rehearse dramatic material. They are also used in drama therapy to overcome anxiety by simulating scenarios that would be fear-inducing in real life.

Viola Spolin American academic and acting theorist

Viola Spolin was a theatre academic, educator and acting coach. She is considered an important innovator in 20th century American theater for creating directorial techniques to help actors to be focused in the present moment and to find choices improvisationally, as if in real life. These acting exercises she later called Theater Games and formed the first body of work that enabled other directors and actors to create improvisational theater. Her book Improvisation for the Theater, which published these techniques, includes her philosophy and her teaching and coaching methods, and is considered the "bible of improvisational theater". Spolin's contributions were seminal to the improvisational theater movement in the U.S. She is considered to be the mother of Improvisational theater. Her work has influenced American theater, television and film by providing new tools and techniques that are now used by actors, directors and writers.

Role-playing games

A role-playing game is a game in which the participants assume the roles of characters and collaboratively create stories. Participants determine the actions of their characters based on their characterisation, and the actions succeed or fail according to a formal system of rules and guidelines. Within the rules, they may improvise freely; their choices shape the direction and outcome of the games.

Game recreative activity

A game is a structured form of play, usually undertaken for enjoyment and sometimes used as an educational tool. Games are distinct from work, which is usually carried out for remuneration, and from art, which is more often an expression of aesthetic or ideological elements. However, the distinction is not clear-cut, and many games are also considered to be work or art.

A character is a person or other being in a narrative. The character may be entirely fictional or based on a real-life person, in which case the distinction of a "fictional" versus "real" character may be made. Derived from the ancient Greek word χαρακτήρ, the English word dates from the Restoration, although it became widely used after its appearance in Tom Jones in 1749. From this, the sense of "a part played by an actor" developed. Character, particularly when enacted by an actor in the theatre or cinema, involves "the illusion of being a human person". In literature, characters guide readers through their stories, helping them to understand plots and ponder themes. Since the end of the 18th century, the phrase "in character" has been used to describe an effective impersonation by an actor. Since the 19th century, the art of creating characters, as practiced by actors or writers, has been called characterisation.

A narrative or story is an account of a series of related events, experiences, or the like, whether true or fictitious. The word derives from the Latin verb narrare, which is derived from the adjective gnarus. Along with exposition, argumentation and description, narration, broadly defined, is one of four rhetorical modes of discourse. More narrowly defined, it is the fiction-writing mode in which the narrator communicates directly to the reader.

Role-playing can also be done online in the form of group story creation, involving anywhere from two to several hundred people, utilizing public forums, private message boards, mailing lists, chatrooms, and instant-messaging chat clients (e.g.,  MSN, Yahoo!, ICQ) to build worlds and characters that may last a few hours, or several years. Often on forum-based roleplays, rules, and standards are set up, such as a minimum word count, character applications, and "plotting" boards to increase complexity and depth of story.

There are different genres of which one can choose while role-playing, including, but not limited to, fantasy, modern, medieval, steam punk, and historical. Books, movies, or games can be, and often are, used as a basis for role-plays (which in such cases may be deemed "collaborative fan-fiction"), with players either assuming the roles of established canon characters or using those the players themselves create ("Original Characters") to replace—or exist alongside—characters from the book, movie, or game, playing through well-trodden plots as alternative characters, or expanding upon the setting and story outside of its established canon.

Psychology

In psychology, an individual's personality can be conceptualized as a set of expectations about oneself and others and that these add up to role-playing or role-taking. [3] Here, the role is fiction because it is not real but it has a degree of consistency. [3] Role-playing is also an important part of a child's psychological development. For example, the instance when a child starts to define "I" and separate him or herself from an adult is the initial condition for and the result of role play. [4] There are also experiments that found role-playing resulted in behavioral change such as the case of smokers who reported negative attitude towards smoking after being asked to pretend to be a person diagnosed with lung cancer. [5]

Training

Interior cockpit of a twinjet flight simulator AC97-0295-13 a.jpeg
Interior cockpit of a twinjet flight simulator

Role-playing may also refer to role training where people rehearse situations in preparation for a future performance and to improve their abilities within a role. The most common examples are occupational training role-plays, educational role-play exercises, and certain military wargames.

Simulation

One of the first uses of computers was to simulate real-world conditions for participants role-playing the flying of aircraft. Flight simulators used computers to solve the equations of flight and train future pilots. The army began full-time role-playing simulations with soldiers using computers both within full scale training exercises and for training in numerous specific tasks under wartime conditions. Examples include weapon firing, vehicle simulators, and control station mock-ups.

Research method

Role playing may also refer to the technique commonly used by researchers studying interpersonal behavior by assigning research participants to particular roles and instructing the participants to act as if a specific set of conditions were true. [6] This technique of assigning and taking roles in psychological research has a long history. It has been used in the early classic social psychological experiments by Kurt Lewin (1939/1997), Stanley Milgram (1963), and Phillip Zimbardo (1971). Herbert Kelman suggested that role-playing might be "the most promising source" of research methods alternative to methods using deception (Kelman 1965). [7]

See also

Related Research Articles

Live action role-playing game form of role-playing game where the participants physically act out their characters actions

A live action role-playing game (LARP) is a form of role-playing game where the participants physically portray their characters. The players pursue goals within a fictional setting represented by the real world while interacting with each other in character. The outcome of player actions may be mediated by game rules or determined by consensus among players. Event arrangers called gamemasters decide the setting and rules to be used and facilitate play.

Role-playing game Game in which players assume the roles of characters in a fictional setting

A role-playing game is a game in which players assume the roles of characters in a fictional setting. Players take responsibility for acting out these roles within a narrative, either through literal acting, or through a process of structured decision-making regarding character development. Actions taken within many games succeed or fail according to a formal system of rules and guidelines.

Social psychology scientific study of social effects on peoples thoughts, feelings, and behaviors

Social psychology is the scientific study of how people's thoughts, feelings, and behaviors are influenced by the actual, imagined or implied presence of others. In this definition, scientific refers to the empirical investigation using the scientific method. The terms thoughts, feelings, and behaviors refer to psychological variables that can be measured in humans. The statement that others' presence may be imagined or implied suggests that humans are malleable to social influences even when alone, such as when watching videos, sitting on the toilet, or quietly appreciating art. In such situations, people can be influenced to follow internalized cultural norms. Social psychologists typically explain human behavior as a result of the interaction of mental states and social situations.

A simulation is an approximate imitation of the operation of a process or system; thpresents its operation over time.

In psychology, qualitative research has come to be defined as research whose findings are not arrived at by statistical or other quantitative procedures. Qualitative research is often said to be naturalistic. Its goal is to understand behaviour in the natural setting. Two other goals attributed to qualitative research are understanding a phenomenon from the perspective of the research participant and understanding the meanings people give to their experience. It attempts to do this by using so-called naturalistic methods—interviewing, observation, ethnography, participant observation, and focus groups. Each of these methods seeks to understand the perspective of the research participant within the context of their everyday life. This means that the researcher is concerned with asking broad questions that allow the respondent to answer in their own words. These methods allow the researcher to try to qualify their understanding during the research process through further probing questions. In addition, a method such as observation allows the researcher to observe people within natural settings—particularly those in public places.

Social influence refers to the way in which individuals change their behavior to meet the demands of a social environment. It takes many forms and can be seen in conformity, socialization, peer pressure, obedience, leadership, persuasion, sales, and marketing. Typically social influence results from a specific action, command, or request, but people also alter their attitudes and behaviors in response to what they perceive others might do or think. In 1958, Harvard psychologist Herbert Kelman identified three broad varieties of social influence.

  1. Compliance is when people appear to agree with others but actually keep their dissenting opinions private.
  2. Identification is when people are influenced by someone who is liked and respected, such as a famous celebrity.
  3. Internalization is when people accept a belief or behavior and agree both publicly and privately.

In psychology, an attribution bias or attributional bias is a cognitive bias that refers to the systematic errors made when people evaluate or try to find reasons for their own and others' behaviors. People constantly make attributions regarding the cause of their own and others' behaviors; however, attributions do not always accurately reflect reality. Rather than operating as objective perceivers, people are prone to perceptual errors that lead to biased interpretations of their social world.

In psychology, the false-consensus effect or false-consensus bias is an attributional type of cognitive bias whereby people tend to overestimate the extent to which their opinions, beliefs, preferences, values, and habits are normal and typical of those of others. This cognitive bias tends to lead to the perception of a consensus that does not exist, a "false consensus".

In-group favoritism, sometimes known as in-group–out-group bias, in-group bias, or intergroup bias, is a pattern of favoring members of one's in-group over out-group members. This can be expressed in evaluation of others, in allocation of resources, and in many other ways.

Drama therapy

Drama therapy is the use of theatre techniques to facilitate personal growth and promote mental health. Drama therapy is used in a wide variety of settings, including hospitals, schools, mental health centers, prisons, and businesses. Drama therapy, as a modality of the creative arts therapies, exists in many forms and can be applicable to individuals, couples, families, and various groups.

Business simulation is simulation used for business training, education or analysis. It can be scenario-based or numeric-based.

History of live action role-playing games

Live action role-playing games, known as LARPs, are a form of role-playing game in which live players/actors assume roles as specific characters and play out a scenario in-character. Technically, many childhood games may be thought of as simple LARPs, as they often involve the assumption of character roles. However, the scope of this article concerns itself mainly with LARPing in a technical sense: the organized live-action role-playing games whose origins are closely related to the invention of tabletop role-playing games in America in the 1970s.

Mind games is used to define three forms of competitive human behaviors:

  1. a largely conscious struggle for psychological one-upmanship, often employing passive–aggressive behavior to specifically demoralize or dis-empower the thinking subject, making the aggressor look superior; also referred to as power games, head games, mind fuckery or head fuckery.
  2. the unconscious games played by people engaged in ulterior transactions of which they are not fully aware, and which transactional analysis considers to form a central element of social life all over the world.
  3. mental exercises designed to improve the functioning of mind and/or personality; see also brain teasers or puzzles.

Conformity is the act of matching attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors to group norms or politics. Norms are implicit, specific rules, shared by a group of individuals, that guide their interactions with others. People often choose to conform to society rather than to pursue personal desires because it is often easier to follow the path others have made already, rather than creating a new one. This tendency to conform occurs in small groups and/or society as a whole, and may result from subtle unconscious influences, or direct and overt social pressure. Conformity can occur in the presence of others, or when an individual is alone. For example, people tend to follow social norms when eating or watching television, even when alone.

Game design game development process of designing the content and rules of a game

Game design is the art of applying design and aesthetics to create a game for entertainment or for educational, exercise, or experimental purposes. Increasingly, elements and principles of game design are also applied to other interactions, in the form of gamification.

Applied improvisation is the application of improvisational methods in various fields like consulting, facilitating, teaching, coaching, researching, generating or evolving ideas and designs, theatrical training and playing, medical and therapeutic settings or in social work.

References

  1. "Definition of Role Playing from the Oxford English Dictionary". Askoxford.com. Retrieved 2012-06-18.
  2. Rilstone, Andrew. "Role-Playing Games: An Overview" 1994, Inter*Action #1".
  3. 1 2 Corsini, Raymond (2017). Role Playing in Psychotherapy. New Brunswick, NJ: AldineTransaction. p. 21. ISBN   9780202363936.
  4. Bruce, Tina; Hakkarainen, Pentti; Bredikyte, Milda (2017). The Routledge International Handbook of Early Childhood Play. Oxon: Routledge. p. 55. ISBN   9781138833715.
  5. Maio, Greg; Haddock, Geoffrey (2014). The Psychology of Attitudes and Attitude Change. Los Angeles, CA: SAGE. p. 157. ISBN   9781446272251.
  6. see: Dawn T. Robinson: Role playing, The SAGE Encyclopedia of Social Science Research Methods.
  7. cf. H. Schuler, Ethical Problems in Psychological Research, Academic Press, 1982, 2013; pp. 137ff.