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2004-07-12

Leisure in the south 

Südwind, an Austrian magazine on 'international politics, culture, and development', to which I have a long-running, sentimental subscription, has a special focus on leisure this month. The attempt by Austrian philosopher Franz M. Wimmer to cope with the vagaries of the concept of leisure or 'Freizeit' (free-time) is online [DE], but not as enlightening as one might hope. Also online [DE] is a critique of the attempts to encroach on leisure under the pretext of globalisation pressures. If you want to read reports on leisure in Brasil and China you must buy the magazine, thereby giving some financial support to the Austrian development agency.

Meanwhile, one of the industrialist campaigners for longer working hours without increased pay has explained that the competitiveness advantages from this are sought for competition within the new EU-25, competition with countries like China or India is not considered. So Austrian workers are supposed to sacrifice leisure for a national goal of slowing down the catch-up of the former-communist neighbours. Nah, won't.


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