Children’s play and culture

The connection between play and culture has an illustrious past. In 1950, the classic play theorist Johan Huizinga articulated the position of play as a cultural phenomenon, one that humans share with animals. In this work, he introduced the defining criteria of play and its relationship to other higher forms of human activity such as art, law, and philosophy. Several years later in 1959, Roberts, Arth, and Bush introduced a classification scheme for games that drew attention to the relationship between the prevalence of games in a culture and cultural complexity. Since that time play research has always been mindful of the connection between play and culture.

The connection between play and culture has an illustrious past. In 1950, the classic play theorist Johan Huizinga articulated the position of play as a cultural phenomenon, one that humans share with animals. In this work, he introduced the defining criteria of play and its relationship to other higher forms of human activity such as art, law, and philosophy. Several years later in 1959, Roberts, Arth, and Bush introduced a classification scheme for games that drew attention to the relationship between the prevalence of games in a culture and cultural complexity. Since that time play research has always been mindful of the connection between play and culture.

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