Understanding The Role Leisure Has Played in Our Life

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To understand how leisure plays an important role in our daily lives today, we should have a complete understanding of how leisure has impacted our lives historically. Just as important would be the role that geo-political events and technology have played throughout history and its effects on leisure. Western civilization uses Aristotle definition of what leisure is “a state of being in which activity is performed for its own sake or as its own end” (Grazia pg.13). The concept of leisure was first formed by the Greeks, Aristotle said that “the life of leisure was the only life fit for a Greek” (pg.19). They (Greeks) felt as if they could not succeed as a city state without leisure. There were many forms of leisure, gymnastics, wrestling, dance, theater, poetry and education among other things. The Greeks felt that mans ability to contemplate was as close to godlike that man could be, and it even separated them from animals. Now let’s fast forward to the classical age which was appropriately named so for trying to emulate the Greeks and their love for the literature and art. During the classical period most of the world’s population worked hard laborious jobs, most were in agriculture, be it farming and herding. If they weren’t doing either of these they were craftsman making and building things with their hands. The work day by today’s standards was brutal; 12 to 16 hour days were very common during the spring and fall and “meals and rest breaks were pauses, not modern leisure” (Cross pg.9). For those who worked in agriculture the colder months did not allow for farming or crops and moving sheep and cattle from farm to slaughter. This hard work also played a role in population for many towns. The average age of death for most wh... ... middle of paper ... .... Prohibition actually saw more alcohol consumption throughout the nation than before the amendment was passed. To go with alcohol people also needed a place to go where they could drink without fear of being caught, this gives us birth to the speak easy. A place that was no different than the bars and pubs pre 18th amendment but know was underground or out of site. You had dancing and gambling along with illegal prostitution and bootleg alcohol. It was common practice during that time that most if not all the crime families supplied to both the public and government( police and government officials) . The benefit of working both sides of the room so to speak is they kept the locals happy and the police were able to give early notice of raids on establishments that were not legal. This allowed their empires to grow and they amassed a lot of wealth because of it.

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