What can we learn about past and present from studying games and leisure?

What we do for leisure and/or what games we play can tell us a lot about societies both past and present. They tell us about their traditions and culture, show the influence of them on what we do today, what separated the upper and lower classes and even the structure of their civilisation. For instance, the fact that the Ancient Romans had gladiator fights shows us many things about their society; they were militaristic, they had the resources to organise these fights and the upper class did not value the lives of the poor at all. 

What do I hope to get out of the semester?

I hope to learn many new things this semester, and gain a new perspective on how games and leisure influenced societies, along with making some new friends. I also hope to enjoy this subject as much as possible and grow as a person.