The Bioshock series looms large in the industry and culture of video games for its ambitious incorporation of high-minded philosophical questions and retro-futuristic aesthetics into the ultraviolent first-person shooter genre. Beyond the Sea marks ten years since the release of the original game with an interdisciplinary collection of essays on Bioshock, Bioshock 2, and Bioshock Infinite. Simultaneously lauded as landmarks in the artistic growth of the medium and criticized for their compromised vision and politics, the Bioshock games have been the subject of significant scholarly and critical discussion. Moving past well-trodden debates, Beyond the Sea broadens the conversation by putting video games in dialogue with a diverse range of other disciplines and cultural forms, from parenting psychology to post-humanism, from Thomas Pynchon to German expressionist cinema. Offering bold new perspectives on a canonical series, Beyond the Sea is a timely contribution to our understanding of the aesthetics, the industry, and the culture of video games. Contributors include Daniel Ante-Contreras (Miracosta), Luke Arnott (Western Ontario), Betsy Brey (Waterloo), Patrick Brown (Iowa), Michael Fuchs (Graz), Jamie Henthorn (Catawba), Brendan Keogh (Queensland), Cameron Kunzelman (Georgia), Cody Mejeur (Michigan State), Matthew Thomas Payne (Notre Dame), Gareth Schott (Waikato), Karen Schrier (Marist), Sarah Stang (York/Ryerson), Sarah Thorne (Carleton), John Vanderhoef (California State, Dominguez Hills), Matthew Wysocki (Flagler), Jordan R. Youngblood (Eastern Connecticut State), and Sarah Zaidan (Emerson).
Felan Parker is assistant professor of media studies at St Michael's College, University of Toronto. Jessica Aldred is an independent scholar, writer, and producer based in Calgary, Alberta.
"Beyond the Sea presents a diversity of scholars doing interesting work in an emerging field. A compelling introduction by Parker and Aldred makes a clear case for the relevance of the Bioshock series in game studies." Carly Kocurek, Illinois Institute of Technology