The reason Go is popular in any given culture is going to be unique to the history of Go in that region. From how it was introduced, to who embraced it, and so on and so on, following all the little vagaries of it’s existence along the way. I’ve lightly studied the history in Korea, Japan, China, Europe, and the West. When I first started Go I was super enthusiastic about all the ancient Go equipment and writings that had survived all this time.
What does it matter if a government supports and encourages Go (Korea), or covets competition and turns Go into a worldwide spectator sport (Japan), or shifts the entire way the game is played from beautiful to competitive (China post 1970), or barely notices Go at all (America)? Each and every one of us have different reasons for playing. Popularity is overrated and only represents the current trend of a culture. Popularity is hardly what rests at the heart of a subject. If you want to know why people play Go, you should ask the people directly… and listen
I think asking why people play games is going to be a shallow road to research. It is a superficial stop on the road to understanding human motivation. Humans are motivated to play games for various reasons. Understand what motivates humans and you will be able to understand why they play games. It seems that you are very interested in either Psychology or Marketing (Psychology theory applied to motivating and affecting humans).
I spent some time researching this side of marketing theory for a couple of years. All you will find here is underhanded ways to manipulate people by understanding what kinds of things drive them. If you research Psychology, then you can better understand how motivation works. But if your primary goal is to uncover a method to affect amounts of people, for the sole purpose of increasing the Go player base, then certain books are likely to be much more helpful than direct academic research.
Books will give you the personal skills to be able to communicate better, understand how to influence people, understand how to manipulate the views and belief systems of others, how to tell compelling stories that lead people to take particular actions, etc… But in the end, you are just a single person. There is only so much that you can do as an individual. Plus, what happens when you are gone? Then your influential work stops and we’re right back where we started.
If you want to create lasting change, then you need to raise awareness and enable people to play Go. You need to organize some sort of non-profit or organization that can do this on a large scale, over time. You need to train people who can get out there into the world and change minds, run events, organize after school programs, incentivize kids to try and to continue playing Go, and to continue to raise awareness in general.
If you want to change the world, you first need to construct something capable of accomplishing the task. A can do attitude and an understanding of human motivation isn’t going to take you very far. At least, not on a world wide scale.
The science behind why things become popular, especially concerning how something becomes and maintains popularity during the history of the world before the internet and common air and water based travel methods were available like they are today, is more about wars, cultures, and the movement of people.
It isn’t like everybody was given access to 100’s of games and then Chess happened to be the crowd favorite. In that instance, it makes sense to study Chess. But in this case, Chess’ popularity has far more to do with external factors, than the game itself.
If you break the game down into a bunch of measurable criteria, can you try and guess why it becomes popular, based on that data? Yes. But what if another game had been popular during that time that met the same criteria, but was wholly different? Would it have gained the same level of popularity? Maybe… who knows. There are simply too many variables to take into consideration.
What are you trying to understand? Popularity? Human behavior? Addiction? How a person makes decisions? Your responses continue to focus on elements that have nothing to do with why Go, in particular, is popular. At this point I think you need to reassess what you are trying to figure out. If this were Kansas, then I think we’re all in Oz now. Kansas has become irrelevant
If you feel that we are missing something then maybe you could try rephrasing this question or coming at the topic from a different angle. We all have feelings and thoughts within us. But communicating those effectively to another, where their understanding and your own are one and the same, is one of the hardest things a person faces. Without effective communication, we are all just trapped inside our own minds. Give it another shot
Just barely qualifies for Medieval Times, but it definitely originated from India.
The history of chess can be traced back nearly 1500 years, although the earliest origins are uncertain. The earliest predecessor of the game probably originated in India out of various ancient Indian board games, before the 6th century AD. From India, the game spread to Persia. When the Arabs conquered Persia, chess was taken up by the Muslim world and subsequently spread to Southern Europe. In Europe, chess evolved into roughly its current form in the 15th century.
– The History of Chess - Wikipedia
Um… if this were truly the reason then this would be true of all Humans, not just humans located in a particular geographic region. This is such a weird topic to be discussing here, but why not .
Modern food culture is often, though not always, based on the recipes and common dishes of the past. As you mentioned Rice has been a staple crop in China’s history, as well as being an excellent base for a massive amount of Chinese cuisine. It is also rather affordable as an ingredient, is versatile in the kitchen, and it helps makes lesser dishes and soups more robust.