Disruptive Play: The Trickster in Politics and Culture


Product Details

$21.95  $20.41
Wakdjunkaga Press
Publish Date
5.83 X 0.8 X 8.27 inches | 1.03 pounds
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About the Author

Shepherd Siegel, PhD is an activist, previous professional rock and jazz musician, and educator in music, career + technical, and special education. His first teaching assignment was with youth in lockup in the County Juvenile Detention Center. Striving to make the greatest positive impact, he earned his doctorate from UC Berkeley while inventing innovative internship programs for troubled and troubling youth, including those with disabilities. Along the way, he played with the jazz trio Swingmatism and the power pop band Thin Ice. While more active as a writer, Dr. Siegel sustains a wide-ranging interest in music. He has written over 30 peer-reviewed and other published journal articles, a textbook that enjoyed two editions (Career Ladders), and the 2018 book Disruptive Play.Dr. Siegel is uniquely qualified to train his playful lens on politics and culture and tease out the Trickster element as it has shown up, tickled society, and then just as quickly disappeared. His diverse academic background--degrees in music, career + technical, administration and special education, and studies in anthropology--equip his scholarly pursuits. His activism grows out of the new visions forged in the bohemia of the San Francisco Bay Area. His presentations and talks have established him as a reliable and entertaining public intellectual on the subject of tricksters in politics and culture. Born in Chicago, Dr. Siegel has lived the longest in the Bay Area and Seattle, where he now resides.


A historically panoramic examination of human playfulness as a naturally healthy and politically subversive force....Siegel's thesis is philosophically provoative and original....combines intellectual rigor with a bracing optimism--he believes the history of disruptive playfulness provides empirical reasons to believe in its sociopolicical power.
--Kirkus Reviews

Sometimes play can disrupt how people see the world.
--Jackson Fackler at 8 years old

Shepherd Siegel is looking at play in a very serious way. This book may tell us more about how to break down limitations and open creativity than all the gobbledygook self-help tomes of the past decade.
--Tom Long, The Detroit News

From the anti-war art of dada to the wit, wisdom and shenanigans of Lisa and Bart Simpson, Dr. Siegel reminds us that the play of art is always a play against power. This book is a timely and irresistible story about what play is and why artistically, politically and culturally, we should play more.
Dr. Michael Vicente Perez, Assistant Professor of Anthropology, The University of Memphis

Somebody once said, "The beginnings of wisdom is a firm grasp of the obvious." That's what came to mind as I learned about Shepherd Siegel's Disruptive Play, an in-depth look at the power of play. Or maybe this work should be viewed, not as an historical review, but more as a DIY on play as an antidote to domination. Check it out, you might just see the forest.
--Daniel Barrett, Co-Creator and founder ofNavigation 101, a high school guidance and counseling program

I was in a better mood after I finished reading about the possibilities of play. I remembered there was a way to approach life that was based around joy and pleasure, rather than fear and drudgery. And that's a good thing!
--Alex Marshall, author of How Cities Work, The Surprising Design of Market Economies andBeneath the Metropolis; columnist for Governing magazine