learning · play · psychology

Who cares

This thought process originally started with me feeling sorry for myself, but then it lead to a really interesting question:

I’m fascinated with the things I’ve been learning and studying lately about play and all the different tendrils it has in other elements of human life, otherwise I wouldn’t be pursuing it. And obviously somebody cared enough to study it and write about it, and somebody at a publishing company thought it was worth publishing. But who really cares about this stuff?


I don’t mean that as a sarcastic or rhetoric question. I mean, who else in the world is interested in how humans play with each other and how it effects their lives, how they work, how they love, how they are seen by society and how play lets them try on other roles and grow skills. What about how humans play with themselves (and I don’t mean that in a dirty way), and what kind of learning do we do while playing versus while studying or memorizing.

This of course leads to the more general question of what is worth studying, and why? Why are certain seemingly insignificant things given millions of dollars for research while other equally insignificant things aren’t? How and why do we place value on knowledge? What is the process? And the difference between what’s considered important knowledge by the public versus the government or the military or academics.

All of this is a bit existential, but my point is there is reasoning behind why we value knowledge, and which bits of knowledge, and certain types of knowledge. Even if it doesn’t seem like it. And while I’m certainly not going to try and tackle that particular question, and it’s important to me to ask about the knowledge I’m going after and what its applications are in the bigger scheme of things, i.e. would other people even care.