Book review: The four Knutepunkt 2013 books.
Things escalate and shrink at the same time - this year saw Knutepunkt publish no less than four volumes, one with just photographs and the others with a light, journalistic style. The reasoning behind the style is obvious, and something mentioned already by last year's editor, Juhana Pettersson: with enough academic channels already available, KP editors both can and want to concentrate on what's (to them anyway) important. For me, that feels like a cop-out, but it seems to suit a big part of the audience.
While several of the essay subjects would in my opinion deserve a much wider and more reference-grounded presentation (esp. Heath's nice and accurate but anecdotal-seeming edu-larp piece and Ström's nifty text on milsims), all in all, the editors have succeeded in making something that was easy to contribute to, without sacrificing too much content or quality. I know from experience that several of the more academic authors could have been much more thorough, but their appetite-whetters here do serve a purpose too. And I do love the increasingly international angle in all of it.
High points for me were too numerous to mention, once I got past my innate "He should have referenced X here, instead of just writing conjecture", but if I had to pick one, it would be Andresen & Nielsen's "The Mixing Desk of Larp". So light, so easy, so clever. Even more impressively, this is the first year, among both KP books and all their siblings, that I did not find a low point, an essay that would have annoyed me with some grandiose claims based on nothing but not knowing what's been done before. Well done, editors. Well done, indeed.
Karete Jacobsen Meland & Katrine Øverlie Svela (eds.) (2013):Crossing Habitual Borders
Crossing Physical Borders
Crossing Theoretical Borders
Online versions of all but the photobook can be found here: http://www.knutepunkt.org/page/book/