8-1 | Play as Experience


Play as Experience

Thomas S. Henricks


The author investigates what he believes one of the more important aspects of play—the experience it generates in its participants. He considers the quality of this experience in relation to five ways of viewing play—as action, interaction, activity, disposition, and within a context. He treats broadly the different forms of affect, including emotion, then critically reviews several prominent theories of the connection between play and experience. He concludes by emphasizing the need to integrate these approaches for a deeper understanding of how play functions in people’s lives. Key words: play as affect; play as action; play as activity; play as disposition; play as experience; play as interaction; play within context