In Praise of Idleness
In Praise of Idleness

In Praise of Idleness

The Conquest of Happiness. (Location 276)

I think that there is far too much work done in the world, that immense harm is caused by the belief that work is virtuous, and that what needs to be preached in modern industrial countries is quite different from what always has been preached. (Location 354)

Note: Work is not inherently virtuous

“The good life, as I conceive it, is a happy life. I do not mean that if you are good you will be happy; I mean that if you are happy you will be good.” New Hopes for a Changing World [1951] (Location 401)

The morality of work is the morality of slaves, and the modern world has no need of slavery. (Location 414)

The conception of duty, speaking historically, has been a means used by the holders of power to induce others to live for the interests of their masters rather than for their own. Of course the holders of power conceal this fact from themselves by managing to believe that their interests are identical with the larger interests of humanity. (Location 421)

Note: The conception of duty is misguided. I thinks it’s a mischaracterization to say that this only exists in the upper echelons of society.

Whatever merit there may be in the production of goods must be entirely derivative from the advantage to be obtained by consuming them. (Location 543)

We think too much of production, and too little of consumption. One result is that we attach too little importance to enjoyment and simple happiness, and that we do not judge production by the pleasure that it gives to the consumer. (Location 546)

Note: Theres a disconnect btween production and cinsumotion. In real life

The pleasures of urban populations have become mainly passive: seeing cinemas, watching football matches, listening to the radio, and so on. This results from the fact that their active energies are fully taken up with work; if they had more leisure, they would again enjoy pleasures in which they took an active part. (Location 553)