Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
Breakthroughs in leisure were predicted by several futurologists, especially in the 1960s. Here are some of their predictions:

"New York Times" had predicted that by 2000 people would have to work at most 4 days a week, less than 8 hours a day. Work would take 147 days, holidays - 218 days.

The work itself would be much less stressful. "You will not need to go to work. The work will come to you" - told CBS's Walter Cronkite in the documentary series "The 21st Century".

Alvin Toffler, the author of the bestsellers "The Third Wave" and "Future Shock", predicted that the working week in this century would be 50% shorter, we would need "leisure counselors" to get through.

In a BBC film of 1966, "General Motors" promised that people would work from 25 to 47 age old; half-year holidays would be usual. The same year, "Time" wrote that in 2000 the machines would produce so much that every US citizen would be truly independent, rich and with plenty of time to kill.

Arthur C. Clarke wrote in 1968 that by 2001 people would be bored to death, switching between hundreds of TV channels. {The above is from a post Soviet article, 2003. The refer to a journal Retrofuture.}

But the social-political-industrial evolution apparently decided otherwise.

For more fulfilling perspective on leisure, watch this highly recommended video lecture. Somewhere midway, Dr David Levy mentions that the modern consumer society was build as a means to cope with overwhelming industrial expansion. And he mentions the following book, a Christian perspective on leisure:


(Hat tip to ET Salon linking to Berman's blog the other day.)

by das monde on Sun Apr 19th, 2009 at 05:04:53 AM EST

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