The book adopts a critical cultural studies lens to explore the entanglement of government and gambling in everyday life. Its qualitative approach to gambling creates a new theoretical framework for understanding the most urgent questions raised by research and policy on gambling.
In the past two decades, gambling industries have experienced exponential growth with annual global expenditure worth approximately 300 billion dollars. Yet most academic research on gambling is concentrated on problem gambling and conducted within the psychological sciences. Nicoll considers gambling at a moment when its integration within everyday cultural spaces, moments, and products is unprecedented. This is the first interdisciplinary cultural study of gambling in everyday life and develops critical and empirical methods that capture the ubiquitous presence of gambling in work, investment and play. This book also contributes to the growing cultural studies literature on video and mobile gaming. In addition to original case studies of gambling moments and spaces, in-depth interviews and participant observations provide readers with an insider’s view of gambling.
Advanced students of sociology, cultural theory, and political science, academic researchers in the field of gambling studies will find this an original and useful text for understanding the cultural and political work of gambling industries in liberal societies.