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Work and Leisure: A History of Ideas Yoram Weiss, Journal of Labor Economics, 2009, vol. 27,

Work and Leisure:

A History of Ideas

Yoram Weiss, Journal of Labor Economics, 2009, vol. 27, no.1

Presenter: Mai Anh Linh

 What is work?  Why do we do it?

What is work? Why do we do it?

 What is work?  Why do we do it?
Definition Work & Social Productivity concerns Work & leisure Work & Employment Family relationship
Definition Work & Social Productivity concerns Work & leisure Work & Employment Family relationship
Definition
Work &
Social
Productivity
concerns
Work &
leisure
Work &
Employment
Family
relationship
Definition Work & Social Productivity concerns Work & leisure Work & Employment Family relationship
Definition Work & Social Productivity concerns Work & leisure Work & Employment Family relationship
Definition
Work &
Social
Productivity
concerns
Work &
leisure
Work &
Employment
Family
relationship
Cleaning Hunting
Cleaning
Hunting

Definition

Work

Leisure

Collecting debts Playing games

Do you enjoy doing those activities?

Adam Smith Hume Becker (1965) Marshall (1920) Jevons (1871) Multidimen- Painful exertion of mind or body
Adam Smith
Hume
Becker
(1965)
Marshall
(1920)
Jevons (1871)
Multidimen-
Painful
exertion of
mind or body
sional
package
Aristotle
A means to
obtain leisure
Bible
Any time
activity that a
Undesirable
but necessary
person sell at
condition for
a positive
wage
survival
 Paid work, which may or may not be enjoyable, give self-respect, provide relationship and monetary
  • Paid work, which may or may not be enjoyable, give self-respect, provide relationship and monetary income.

  • Unpaid ʻwork’, such as house-cleaning, shopping, childcare, gardening;

  • Paid work may be more enjoyable than some unpaid activities;

  • A given activity can be a pure pleasure, or a tiresome duty, or a means of earning money.

  • Being unemployed, or involuntary leisure, which may generate feelings of bitterness;

  • Leisure activities of a valued kind they may require learning and skill

Definition Work & Social Productivity concerns Work & leisure Work & Employment Family relationship
Definition
Work &
Social
Productivity
concerns
Work &
leisure
Work &
Employment
Family
relationship
Tullock (1967), Baumol (1990) Rent seeking Marx (1867) Any creation of surplus Mill (1844) value Acquisition
Tullock (1967),
Baumol (1990)
Rent seeking
Marx (1867)
Any creation
of surplus
Mill (1844)
value
Acquisition of
Plato
Using division
of labor, a
Smith (1776)
Productive –
stored and
redistributed
Unproductive
- perished
Skills is
productive
group can
produce more
Definition Work & Social Productivity concerns Work & leisure Work & Employment Family relationship
Definition Work & Social Productivity concerns Work & leisure Work & Employment Family relationship
Definition
Work &
Social
Productivity
concerns
Work &
leisure
Work &
Employment
Family
relationship
Employment relationship  Worker sells his work but he himself remains his own property – Marshall

Employment relationship

Worker sells his work but he himself remains his own property Marshall (1920)

 The employment relationship requires some forms of contracting that specifies the level of monitoring and

The employment relationship requires some forms of contracting that specifies the level of monitoring and the various incentives to exert effort (Zerubavel, 1981)

Employers usually have the upper hand Unskilled workers are at disadvantage

Technological effect Marx (1867)  Workers are at permeant disadvantage  Wages are kept at minimum

Technological effect

Marx (1867) Workers are at permeant disadvantage Wages are kept at minimum Dehumanizing impact of the factory system

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<a href=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZdvEGPt4s0Y " id="pdf-obj-16-6" src="pdf-obj-16-6.jpg">
Technological effect Lindbeck & Snower (2000)  Improve working conditions  Contribute more to the development

Technological effect

Lindbeck & Snower (2000) Improve working conditions

Contribute more to the development of new product

Creating new jobs

 Self-employment to avoid control by others

Self-employment to avoid control by others

 Self-employment to avoid control by others
Definition Work & Social Productivity concerns Work & leisure Employment Work & Family relationship
Definition Work & Social Productivity concerns Work & leisure Employment Work & Family relationship
Definition
Work &
Social
Productivity
concerns
Work &
leisure
Employment
Work & Family
relationship
Traditional Men works outsides Woman works at home (Bible) Modern (Aguiar & Hurst, 2007) Reduced market
Traditional
Men works outsides
Woman works at home
(Bible)
Modern
(Aguiar &
Hurst, 2007)
Reduced market work
Increased market work
Work pattern of men and women have become more similar
Men and women have increased their leisure in similar manner
What changed?  Social equality  Education  Gain economic independence  Family cooperation and conflict

What changed?

Social equality Education Gain economic independence Family cooperation and conflict

Definition Work & Social concerns Productivity Work & leisure Work & Employment Family relationship
Definition
Work & Social
concerns
Productivity
Work &
leisure
Work &
Employment
Family
relationship
 The willingness of each person to exert effort or to consume leisure depends on the

The willingness of each person to exert effort or to consume leisure depends on the choices of others in a preference group

Dimensions? Effect to efficiency? Effect to choices of work and leisure?

Dimensions  Technological interactions  Fairness  Statues  Reciprocity  …

Dimensions

Technological interactions Fairness Statues Reciprocity

Effect to efficiency  Social concerns may or may not increase efficiency (Hicks, 1963)
Effect to efficiency
Effect to efficiency

Social concerns may or may not increase efficiency (Hicks, 1963)

Effect to choices of work and leisure  Social norms often influence choices of work and

Effect to choices of work and leisure

Social norms often influence choices of work and leisure

Jewish & Christian: work is to some extend a moral obligation

Thank you very much!

Thank you very much!