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Philosophy in the Contemporary World

Volume 9, Issue 1, Spring/Summer 2002

Suzanne Laba Cataldi
Pages 19-26

Making a Game of Killing
Fantasy, Reality and the Violence at Columbine High School

This paper focuses on the disturbing mixture of fantasy with reality in the massacre at Columbine, where the perpetrators appear to have made a game or 'fun' of their killing Because of the deception involved and despite their immersion in violent media, I argue that they could not have been totally confused about the difference between play and actual violence. Huizinga's notion of play and Merleau-Ponty's reversibility thesis are applied to the situation.

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