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The Monopoly Board Game: A Symbol of Racial Inequality

“The Prices on Your Monopoly Board Hold a Dark Secret. The property values of the popular game reflect a legacy of racism and inequality.” — Mary Pilon, author of The Monopolists.

The version of Monopoly produced by Parker Brothers for the masses starting in the mid-1930s  was an illustrated board game of discrimination.

Ironically, Lizzie Magie, the inventor of the game, was a feminist who created the board game as an educational teaching tool in the early 1900s. But her original invention was copied and changed into a board game with a focus she never intended.

The popular board is based on real estate in Atlantic City, New Jersey. There are 50 states in the US. Pick a city, any city elsewhere. What would a board game based on real estate in a different city reflect?

Picture of train on Monopoly board

Sources

The Atlantic, February 21, 2021, Mary Pilon: https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2021/02/racism-your-monopoly-board/618098/

The Famous Board Game of Lizzie Magie: https://nichecreativity.com/the-famous-board-game-of-lizzie-magie/