What is Leisure?

Leisure, in the true, now almost forgotten sense of the word, is activity without extrinsic end, “purposiveness without purpose,” as Kant put it. The sculptor engrossed I cutting marble, the teacher intent on imparting a difficult idea, the musician struggling with a score, a scientist exploring the mysteries of space and time – such people have no other aim than to do what they are doing well. They may receive an income for their efforts, but that income is not what motivates them. In our terms, they are engaged in leisure, not toil.

Robert and Edward Skidelsky, How much is enough?



I do wonder, why am I spending my free time, typing excerpts from books and putting them on the internet? I suppose it is an activity with an end in itself. Perhaps it gives me satisfaction of some form.

A bit like how people edit articles on Wikipedia or upload music online for free.


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