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Envisioning a future by paying attention to the past: Rediscovering the work-of-leisure

von Bülow, Charlotte; Simpson, Peter


Charlotte von Bülow


Populist movements are inherently reactionary, motivated by dissatisfaction with the status quo (Albertazzi & McDonnell, 2008). One source of dissatisfaction in the West over the last decade has been a decline in prosperity alongside an increase in demands for improved performance - a combination that does not sit well with the organisational mantra of achieving more for less. Whilst some political leaders choose to fuel these reactionary dynamics, the opportunity for a more radical leadership intervention in (re-)discovering a desired future is lost.

In this paper we will interrogate the acquisitive busy-ness that is endemic in modern society and consider the place of an ancient understanding of the work-of-leisure (Pieper, 1952). This contrasts with a desire for 'free' time, an alienated form of leisure that lacks philosophical insight (Allen, 1989). We ask, 'How might leadership contribute to a populist movement that re-envisions a quality of life based on communal wisdom rather than materialistic acquisition?'


von B├╝low, C., & Simpson, P. (2017, December). Envisioning a future by paying attention to the past: Rediscovering the work-of-leisure. Paper presented at International Studying Leadership Conference 2017

Presentation Conference Type Conference Paper (unpublished)
Conference Name International Studying Leadership Conference 2017
Start Date Dec 10, 2017
End Date Dec 12, 2017
Acceptance Date Nov 20, 2017
Publication Date Jan 1, 2017
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Keywords leadership, leisure, organisational practice, philosophy, productivity, work
Additional Information Title of Conference or Conference Proceedings : International Studying Leadership Conference 2017: 'Leadership, Dissent, and Disobedience: Leaders and Followers in a Populist Age'


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