What happens on campus when female athletes realize they're not being treated equally?
This game is set at a fictional university in the mid-1990s. A debate over the role of athletics quickly expands to encompass demands that women’s sports and athletes receive more resources and opportunities. The result is a firestorm of controversy on and off campus. Drawing on congressional testimonies from the Title IX hearings, players advance their views in student government meetings, talk radio shows, town meetings, and impromptu rallies. As students wrestle with questions of gender parity and the place of athletics in higher education, they learn about the implementation—and implications—of legal change in the United States.
Using the Game
"My students and I really like this game because it forces them to make difficult choices when trying to achieve “equality” or “equity” in university athletic programs. Again and again students discuss how hard it is to achieve their goals within the rules of the game. Just like any other policy choice, there are difficult tradeoffs that they have to negotiate. Since I teach at a smaller institution with a really strong campus community feel, that makes it even more difficult for them. They want unanimous consensus so badly, but the game won’t allow it. It really makes them work hard on the principles of justice and fairness within the law."
"Excellent game! And useful incorporation of the different 'spaces.' I also like that there are allowances for more than one thing going on at once, which is both realistic and useful in a game context. It also helps to keep a great number of students highly engaged – there are few opportunities for them to just sit and do nothing."
"I think that this game not only teaches students about the difficulties and complexities of implementing an idea of 'equality,' but it also helps them understand the college environment that they themselves are in. It’s a wonderful opportunity to educate students about the institutions that they are in and the ways that they can change things if they want to. It’s a game that is directly applicable to their everyday lives as college students, and that’s fantastic. I think it also engages students in an area that they (probably) already have some significant interest in, and some basic knowledge of as well.."
Reacting Consortium members can access all downloadable materials (including expanded and updated materials) below. You will be asked to sign in before downloading. Basic game materials (Gamebook, Role Sheets, Instructor's Guide, and Handouts) are available to any instructor through the publisher.
Students also need a Role Sheet, which contains biographical information, role-specific resources or assignments, and their character's secret victory objectives.
Kelly McFall is professor of history and chair of the humanities division at Newman University in Wichita, Kansas. Since 2013, he has run a popular podcast focusing on new books in genocide studies. In 2014, he won the inaugural Faculty of Distinction award from the Kansas Independent Colleges Association, recognizing his teaching excellence. He is a member of the Reacting to the Past editorial board.
Reacting and Related Titles
Abigail Perkiss (Kean University) is an Assistant Professor of History at Kean University in Union, New Jersey. Her first book, Making Good Neighbors: Civil Rights, Liberalism, and Integration in Postwar Philadelphia (Cornell University Press, 2014), examined the creation of intentionally integrated neighborhoods in the latter half of the twentieth century. She completed a joint JD/PhD in U.S. history at Temple University. She is the Managing and Pedagogy Editor of the Oral History Review, and Vice President of Oral History in the Mid-Atlantic Region.
Reacting and Related Titles