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Arthur Morgan VA narrates Red Dead Redemption US history book

A unique approach to teaching history

Arthur Morgan voice actor Roger Clark is narrating a different kind of video game adaptation: a new US history audiobook that examines the country’s past through the lens of Red Dead Redemption. The book is Red Dead’s History: A Video Game, an Obsession, and America’s Violent Past, by University of Tennessee director of graduate studies Tore Olsson, and it’s as much an examination of Red Dead’s historical authenticity as it is an exploration of U.S. history (thanks, IGN).

“Weaving together the fictional characters and plot of the Red Dead Redemption games with real-life historical vignettes, Olsson reveals that the action-packed violence of the Red Dead universe isn’t just spawned from Hollywood westerns but rooted in real sociopolitical issues from turn-of-the-century America,” the book’s description reads.

Olsson, who also teaches a course on Red Dead Redemption 2, said on Reddit that he uses the book to shine a light not just on how Red Dead 2 interacts with history, but to make more people aware of cultural, social, and economic situations in the American Gilded Age that often go unnoticed outside college-level history courses. It starts with an overview of the idea of the West in hte late 1800s before examining the volatile social and racial tensions that drive much of Red Dead 2’s narrative and side stories.

Clark said he was thrilled at the chance to narrate the book and be part of the project.

“I was fascinated by this because when we were working on Red Dead, I know how much research went into it by the writers and a great number of people,” Clark told IGN in a recent interview. “I know historical accuracy to a certain point was very important so they could get stuff thematically correct.”

“The fact so many other people are now acknowledging and addressing the work of other people on the team, such as all the researchers and writers, I just think is awesome. There are literally thousands of unsung heroes who were able to bring this to the fans. I’m just thrilled to be a part of something that spotlights them.”

Red Dead's History audiobook adaptation releases in August 2024.