"you don't play, you volunteer": Narrative public memory construction in medal of honor: Rising sun

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Narrative and ludological analysis suggests that Electronic Arts' Medal of Honor: Rising Sun constructs a narrative of World War II that selectively retells history and constructs an Orientalist representation of the Japanese Empire. The gaming environment exists as an interactive museum that immerses gamers into history so that they experience warfare in their homes. Combining newsreels, fictional letters from home, and interviews with veterans of the "Good War," Medal of Honor: Rising Sun retells a history that omits details of Japanese internment or atomic weapons. The intertwined themes of personal revenge for the loss of a family member and historical revenge for the attack on Pearl Harbor guide gamers through an "educational" experience of the war. Finally, its failure to simulate violence means that Medal of Honor: Rising Sun invites a critical blindness to commemorating war.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)339-356
Number of pages18
JournalCritical Studies in Media Communication
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2007



  • Ludology
  • Public Memory
  • Video Games
  • World War II

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Communication

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