Pub. date: 2009 | Online Pub. Date: May 18, 2009 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412971935 | Print ISBN: 9781412966702 | Online ISBN: 9781412971935| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Rock Paper Scissors
James I. Deutsch
Rock Paper Scissors is one of the oldest games used for making decisions in human existence. Also known as Jan-Ken-Pon, Rochambeau (sometimes spelled Roshambo), Rock Paper Scissors is distinguished by its simplicity. No special materials are required—only fingers on a hand. And unlike tossing coins or drawing straws, which depend on random luck, Rock Paper Scissors can be a game of skill, requiring quick thinking. The origins of Rock Paper Scissors remain obscure, in part because there are neither tangible artifacts nor written documents typically associated with the game. Nevertheless, there is evidence that a similar finger-throwing game (in which two players simultaneously display a number of their fingers) was played in Egypt as early as 2000 b.c.E. The idea of three distinct gestures made with the hand and fingers seems to have emerged b.c.E. ...