Leisure Studies

Published by Taylor & Francis (Routledge)
Online ISSN: 1466-4496
Print ISSN: 0261-4367
Analyzed the content of leisure advertisements in 2 Canadian magazines aimed at older and younger women, respectively. Over a 24-yr period, socializing was strongly depicted as a female leisure activity. Creative or cultural activities were rarely illustrated. Illustrations of physical activity peaked during 1974–1978, with a marked decline afterwards. The predominant message has been that women's leisure is sedentary and usually involves the presence of a man. Although the depiction of women participating in leisure by themselves has increased during the 1980s, the heterosexual message is still strong, particularly in the young women's magazine. Overall, women in the 1960s received broader messages about leisure than do women in the 1980s. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
Data from 99 Barbados residents and 96 tourists demonstrate that in the intensely tourism-oriented countries of the periphery, the level of maturity of tourism in the resort and the pattern of spatial behavior of tourists and residents provide a more fruitful assessment of the occurrence or nonoccurrence of stress between tourists and residents. It is suggested that in countries where social relationships are already volatile, the presence of tourists (who are easily recognizable and assumed to be elitist) poses an additional complication. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
Describes ways in which the crisis in Poland during the early 1980s affected people's leisure patterns. Topics addressed include transitions in the structure of discretionary time and amount of time available for leisure; changes in forms of leisure and leisure spending; and sales of leisure goods. Time budget and personal consumption statistics also illustrate the impact of the crisis and are discussed in the context of a leisure infrastructure, political climate, health standards, housing conditions, and environment. Whether people have adjusted to this crisis is addressed. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
Distribution of leisure patterns
Health score by leisure pattern by employment status (%)
Explored the connections between uses of leisure time and health status during employment and unemployment. Surveys were completed by 4,554 individuals (aged 16+ yrs) who participated in 7 indoor sports (e.g., soccer, badminton, swimming, martial arts) at 46 facilities in 6 cities in the UK. According to their responses, 1,594 Ss were assigned to 6 leisure patterns: rich (20.1%), rich but rarely sporting (10.4%), impoverished (15.0%), sports-centered (12.7%), dabbling (16.8%), and focused (24.9%). In most cases, the employed Ss had better health scores than unemployed Ss. Ss with impoverished leisure were the least healthy of all, regardless of employment status. Ss who participated in a narrow range of leisure activities (focused) were particularly vulnerable to the health implications of unemployment. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
Examined the relationships between the degree of belief in the Protestant work ethic (PWE) and work involvement (WI) with the nonwork activities of unemployed individuals and with their psychological state, in view of the alleged negative role played by PWE and WI in the process of coping with unemployment. Data were collected from 435 individuals (aged 27–47 yrs) with academic qualifications, all of whom had been unemployed and 146 of whom were still unemployed at the time of data collection. Results indicate that, contrary to expectation, Ss with high PWE or WI turned to nonwork activities more frequently while unemployed and derived more psychological benefit from such activities than individuals low on PWE and WI. Findings suggest that PWE and WI, far from hindering individual coping with unemployment through nonwork activities, may contribute to this coping process. (21 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
20 persons (mean age 28 yrs) for whom leisure activities served to provide cultural enhancement (culturally active group) or to overcome work fatigue (culturally inactive group) were subjected to an in-depth psychological analysis. Results show that for the culturally inactive group, cultural behavior lay in the spectrum of entertainment offered to the masses. They chose collective forms of activities in which they played passive roles. They were also more likely to play passive roles when confronted by social problems. By contrast, Ss actively interested in cultural activities made efforts to solve problems in addition to their job and social responsibilities. Compared to culturally inactive Ss, active Ss exhibited higher intellectual capacities (e.g., a greater wealth of imagination, a tendency toward abstract thinking, and a greater capacity for elaboration); integrated themselves better into the world and exhibited a more intense interest in social issues; were more mature and slightly more relaxed; and were more optimal in problem-solving behavior. There was also a tendency for greater stress in the active group. Objectively, Ss in the culturally inactive group seemed to be wealthy and well adapted, but subjectively they were unfulfilled and usually joyless. In the active group, life-styles were subjectively joyful and well balanced, although characterized by neurosis (for Ss around 30 yrs) and ego-weak psychopathy. (3 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
Discusses changes in work and leisure time, changes in the relationship between work time and free time, the experience of a new social category (i.e., early pensioners), and time in tomorrow's society. It is asserted that humans are nearing the end of a period of historic change characterized by a 3-fold revolution (more free than work time, more not working than working, and the lengthening of the period of retirement). It is suggested that free time can be catastrophic if it means that humans are set apart from social life. (8 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
This paper is a theoretical and historical study which explores aspects of gendered space through the early nineteenth century urban ramble. It is argued that the activity of rambling represents a dominant mode of urban masculinity concerned with the physical and conceptual pursuit of pleasure, specifically sexual pleasure. The male rambler constructs his masculinity socially and spatially, through gendered codes of vision and movement. The author's concern as a feminist architectural historian is to develop methodologies which describe, explain and critique how space is gendered and gender spatialized. The notion of gendered space, of concern to architects, geographers, anthropologists, historians and cultural critics alike, has, despite differences in methodological approach, tended to focus on critiquing the paradigm of the separate spheres, 'deconstructing' this binary, showing its ideological underpinnings in patriarchy and capitalism. The author's work in architectural history has been informed by these strategies, but suggests new ways for thinking about the gendering of space as physical and conceptual urban movements of display, consumption and exchange. The ramble featured in a number of key texts published in the 1820s, including Pierce Egan's Life in London (1821), represents London as a gendered place of pleasure and enjoyment. This paper follows the route of the rambler, focusing on a number of spaces in the upper class and masculine district around St. James's - the Royal Opera House, Crockford's Gambling House, and several streets in the vicinity - the Haymarket, Pall Mall, Regent Street, Bond Street and St. James's Street. The ramble provides us with a conceptual map of urban space, one which rethinks the city as a series of gendered spaces of flow rather than a series of discrete architectural elements.
`In the 1960s an unholy alliance was developing. Sport was helping to make television and television was helping to make sport' (McCormack, 1984). In the last twenty years British sport has gone through a transformation as dramatic as its earlier formative period of 1875-1900. The driving force of this transformation has been the changing economic environment produced by the spread of television and the massive growth of sponsorship. These economic forces have in turn produced a cultural transformation. The desire of sponsors for television coverage has meant that television's own needs have become a crucial factor for sport organizations to consider when planning their strategies. Athletics, a sport in the process of professionalization, is taken as a case study.
Data from five national time use surveys in the Netherlands (1975 to 1995), and three time use surveys in Canada (1981 to 1992) are examined in an attempt to answer two questions: (1) Have people living in industrial societies gained or lost free time during the last two decades? (2) To what extent are the combined pressures of work and domestic obligations, alluded to in the literature as 'time pressure' or 'time squeeze' (Linder, 1970; Rifkin, 1987; Robinson, 1990; Schor, 1991), distributed evenly across different life cycle groups and social strata. The article concludes that, during the observed period, the combined workloads of paid and unpaid work have risen, and the amounts of free time have declined or remained static, for the employed populations in both countries. The analyses in the article lend considerable support to the thesis of life cycle and social status polarization of people's access to time. The workloads of life cycle groups operating under combined pressures of multiple work and family roles have risen at the same rate or faster than the workloads of life cycle groups with fewer role commitments. Compared with the amount of words and analytical time used to study leisure markets, leisure facilities, leisure motivations and leisure policies, measuring leisure time appears to be a 'cinderella' topic. (Martin and Mason, 1994)
This paper recognizes that there have been important changes in British youth cultures in recent years but argues that, contrary to claims that have been made in debates about a postmodern condition, the changes do not include leisure or consumption based lifestyles now acting as foundations for identity formation. Since the 1970s youth has been prolonged, young people's experiences have been individualized, their futures have become less certain, and all the steps that they can take towards adulthood have become more risky. These broader changes are related to trends in young people's leisure; a wider age span is involved in present-day youth scenes; gender and social class differences have blurred; tastes and styles have splintered and leisure activities are now more likely to form their own groups rather than attract pre-existent groups of young people. However, these are all trends, not absolute states, and the main systematic differences in leisure practices are still linked to the old predictors. Lifestyle formation is still normally within social class, ethnic and gender groups. Young people's core self-concepts retain familiar bases in gender, family, ethnic and educational backgrounds, and experiences in the labour market. Leisure pursuits affect how young (and older) people feel about themselves and add fine detail to their social identities but do not tell them or others who they basically are. It is argued that present-day leisure has become even less equipped than formerly to support identity formation and that, in any case, leisure is prohibited from assuming such a role by its own core functions.
This paper examines representations of English identity in the popular press through a review of the tabloids' coverage of the 2002 Football World Cup. Utilizing a qualitative discourse analysis approach, the paper assesses the content, style and tone of reports of the England team during the tournament and places these within the context of contemporaneous news and current affairs. It is argued that much of the coverage of England's matches was flavoured with the kind of military metaphors and xenophobic cliche;aa evident in previous reporting of football tournaments. The coincidence of England's progress in the World Cup with the Golden Jubilee celebrations afforded the opportunity for the tabloids to declare that a 'new kind of national confidence and patriotism' had been born. However, whilst a new, more inclusive Englishness was evolving amongst England supporters, this was not reflected in associated tabloid coverage, where a narrower and more nostalgic Englishness was commonly observed.
Conspicuous consumption, as conceptualized by Veblen, increasingly influences people's choices of leisure commodities, not for their use value but for their signification in terms of identity and status. This paper explores the impact on their identity formation of their choice of smoking as a leisure activity by adolescent girls. We ask, 'why do adolescent women adopt the images of women produced by the smoking marketeers?'; 'why do adolescent women find this image desirable?' and 'what alternative choices of leisure activity are there for these women and for women in general?' This form of leisure is a two edged sword. As a fashion accessory or a form of conspicuous consumption it may enhance outward appearances, status and peer group approval and project an image of autonomy. Nevertheless it may also deny the opportunities that leisure offers for exploration of identities which add more enduring value to one's sense of self. As a fashion accessory its very nature is of ephemeral value, while its long-term effects, in this instance, can be fatal. Ultimately we argue that leisure in the 1990s offers adolescent girls a perplexing array of stultifying stereotypes and multiple enriching identities. If we can provide a more sophisticated understanding of the adolescent smoker's world the leisure professional may be able to provide health education programs with opportunities for less health damaging activities.
The notion of hordes crowding and threatening the countryside is questioned on grounds of accuracy and intent; and the case for wider participation in countryside recreation by the public as a whole is explored. The diversity of recreational walking as an activity and experience is analysed to demonstrate that it can serve a wide range of purposes; and the need to address access as a wide-ranging and complex concept is outlined. Aspects of current policy in respect of access and Public Rights of Way are subject to critical appraisal; and failure to match both provision of facilities and their promotion to people's various capabilities is explored with special reference to the needs of infrequent users and 'latent demand'. The paper argues explicitly and implicitly that the countryside can and should provide enjoyment to many more people; and that it can do so without threatening the resource base, provided appropriate policies, priorities and management practices are widely adopted.
This paper has emerged from research that is concerned with the relationship between mountaineers and adventure tourists. The specific aim was to examine the rules governing the mountain adventure holiday experience and, in particular, how such rules are constructed, enforced, internalized and might contribute to an identity of 'mountaineer'. Through an exploration of the social dynamics of a setting that contains physical dangers, the role of the mountain guide emerges as crucial. Theoretical dimensions concerning the guide as a choreographer of social experience are explored and developed through a discussion of data revealed by the research. The methodology is predominately qualitative and utilizes the author's experience as a mountain guide to access the field. The discussion reveals differences between mountain guides and tourist guides, but also differences among the participants. These appear to relate to the shallowness or depth of their engagement and thereby suggest other ways that adventurous leisure experiences might be theorized, for example, adventure as education. It is contended that the role of the mountain guide is pivotal in not only choreographing the adventure, but also thereby in perpetuating Western traditions of mountaineering. Rules governing the adventure holiday experience are both enabling and constraining of the freedom promised, within discourses of established mountaineering practice, which the guide adheres to, and clients more or less subscribe to.
At present, the western world wrestles with an obesity epidemic whilst, paradoxically, maintaining a fascination for the aesthetic ideal body. With the Scottish health and fitness industry providing the empirical backdrop, and drawing on the work of Bourdieu, this paper critically reflects upon processes of embodied production and consumption and the quest for physical capital and its referential symbolism. Using a range of qualitative methods across three case study facilities it is argued that as consumers seek to attain desired forms of physical capital, health and fitness clubs serve both to capitalize on and perpetuate cycles of embodied dissatisfaction. Although willingly subjecting their bodies to constant ocularcentric and objectifying processes, consumers are constantly reminded of their failure to attain the physical capital they desire. These processes not only mirror modern consumerism but also highlight a process of self-imposed domination. With external medical and media discourses exerting persistent pressure on the embodied state, desire for physical capital produces a self-legitimating and regulatory regime perpetrated upon the self within the internal environment of the health and fitness club. Therefore, as a venue for playing out aesthetic politics, health and fitness club spaces are anything but healthy as they oil the desire and dreamscape of physical capital, maintaining an aesthetic masochism and thus keeping the treadmills literally and economically turning.
Life history interviews were used in this study to identify the experiences of leisure for American farm women over their lifespan. Symbolic interaction was the organizing framework in which women described the contexts of their lives and the ways in which they experienced leisure. The findings describe three typologies of women identified by their perception of the intersection of work and leisure. In addition, the farm women shared several common containers for leisure including types of activities, social settings and physical locations.
Retirement has only recently become institutionalized in the United States. Earlier, most older men remained in the labour force, but today retirement is the overwhelming norm for the older American worker. The macroeconomic and microeconomic functions of retirement are distinguished. The `selling' of retirement and the accompanying changes in attitude are illustrated by the treatment of retirement in the media, positive thinking being the dominant ideology. But retirees are often victims of cultural inconsistencies: changes in attitude to work and leisure lag behind changes in workforce participation.
This article reviews the contemporary state of British media studies, concentrating on those areas where links may be forged with leisure studies. The separate development of media studies and leisure studies is initially noted. Discussion is organized under five headings: ownership and control, form and content, the audience, theories and new technology. Each contains a summary of questions and areas of concern common to media and leisure studies. The conclusion argues the need for more middle-range concepts to develop specific links between media and leisure studies.
Places are one pervasive component of leisure and tourism. Leisure and tourism include encounters with place. Encounters with other people and material things, imagination and memory occur in places. In social science increasing attention is being given to the human individual as productive in everyday practices, as producer rather than consumer. This position is informed through a discussion of the phenomena of embodiment, the human subject and practise. In this paper these elements are outlined and attention directed to ways in which these inform thinking about place in leisure and tourism. These elements are considered in relation to the sensuous, social and poetic dimensions of embodiment. Embodiment denotes the ways in which the individual grasps the world around her/him and makes sense of it in ways that engage both mind and body. It is argued that these dimensions offer a route into a more human-oriented comprehension of leisure and tourism than has been prevalent in much recent work in leisure and tourism studies, and thus provides ground for a more inclusive approach to policy in the new millennium. It is important to note that this emphasis on the human individual in no sense draws away from recognition of other contextual concerns which are on the contrary given more affective consideration.
The subsidized national performing arts companies in Britain have experienced a transformation in their economic performance over the last decade. Significant increases in ticket prices have been achieved, but not as might be expected to offset reductions in government subsidy, which have generally been maintained or even increased, but instead to fund increased staff and administration costs. This paper examines the trends in performance, ticket prices and audiences for the major subsidized performing arts companies in England over a ten year period 1986/7-1995/6. This economic and trend analysis shows that these major companies have been successful in increasing ticket prices and box office revenue, effectively exploiting audience willingness-to-pay, but have not generally increased audiences or their output in terms of the number of performances and productions staged. In contrast to attendance at live arts events generally, which have actually increased over this same period, the national grant-aided arts companies have offered fewer productions and performances to a declining but higher spending audience, rather than widening access or the profile of attenders, whilst at the same time maintaining their levels of subsidy. Analysis of this decade of the subsidized arts therefore presents a paradoxical case of economic 'success' but cultural policy 'failure'.
Since sport is accorded such a significant position within national popular culture, it assumes corresponding importance in producing, reproducing and challenging racial myths. This paper explores how dominant notions of black physicality are embedded in sports practice and how such assumptions may be challenged. To do this we shall offer a critique of existing literature and, importantly, draw on empirical evidence from a recent study of the nature and extent of racism in rugby league. Together these allow us to explore tacit racism, that which is hidden and normalized by language and culture. At the heart of this are stereotypes of 'race' and racial qualities, created by white hegemonic culture with their significance perpetuated by society, including the people who experience the stereotyping. These cultural productions maintain inequalities even after the caricatures they portray may have changed. We examine how these historically specific images are formed and justified (and thereby normalized) and how they have material effects through the actions of coaches, managers, chairmen and players. Finally, we shall review how the sports arena can be used to challenge racist stereotypes to offer necessary, though not sufficient, conditions to begin to change social relations more generally.
Since the early 1960s confrontations have occurred regularly between police and spectators attending the annual Australian Grand Prix Motorcycle Races. By the late 1970s these confrontations had escalated to become localized riots occurring at the site of the police compound on the Mount Panorama race circuit in Bathurst. To address the social meanings of these riots, historical, structural and phenomenological levels of analysis are used. Historical data point to the institutionalization of the conflict and its relationship to wider social structures. Participant observation data from the eight hour riot in 1985 allow a phenomenological reading of the play, game and ritual meanings embedded in the riots. These three levels of analysis lead to the proposition that the social roots of conflict lie in the working-class, motorcycle sub-culture backgrounds of youth involved in the riots and the state response to the control of their leisure activity.
Previous literature has highlighted the need to consider explicitly gender differences in leisure behaviour. This paper directly addresses this issue by exploring differences in performance, risk propensity and confidence between males and females in off-course horserace betting — a leisure activity which accounted for a turnover of £5116 million in the UK in 1993/4. The justification for this setting resides in the ecological advantages it enjoys and in the fact that recent changes in UK betting legislation suggest that women are likely to form an increasingly important subset of the off-course betting population. The results suggest a mild performance advantage for female over male bettors, contrary to the consensus among earlier work. On comparative risk propensity, the strongest impression to emerge from the results is of significant differences in the way that male and female bettors perceive and react to risk via their betting strategies. In terms of confidence, the traditional notion of greater male confidence is not unequivocally corroborated in the betting environment.
There has been a considerable amount of academic discussion of the type of constraints that influence the non-use of leisure facilities. These analyses have taken into consideration such factors as gender, social class, age and mobility. At least some of these include the fear of entering certain spaces as an additional constraint. This paper reveals that in Belfast, fear, which may be based either on personal experience or on imaginary scenarios that result from rumour and innuendo, is a major factor that deters people from using accessible leisure facilities. The paper contains extensive qualitative material that underlines this point. The authors argue that, despite an ongoing peace process, the sectarianization of place has a massive impact on the use of leisure facilities and recommend that fear should be more often taken into account when constraints on leisure participation are discussed.
Heritage sites attract many visitors each year. However, the revenue collected in entrance charges does not represent the total benefit provided by heritage sites. Some visitors value their visit more than the entrance charge; some decline to enter at the price but are willing to pay something to enter; other people derive utility from the contribution of heritage buildings to the landscape; whilst others benefit from the knowledge that the heritage sites are being preserved for future generations. For one heritage site, Warkworth Castle in Northumbria, benefits received by those entering the castle were estimated to be more than twice the financial revenue derived from entrance charges. This would suggest funding for heritage sites should not be determined by visitor numbers alone. However, as benefits derived in terms of recreational enjoyment and educational value from the site were estimated to be larger than their non-use benefits or preservation value, this suggests that access to such sites is an important determinant of heritage value.
In the concentration on the leisure patterns and aspirations of individuals, we have lost sight of the extremely varied and significant ways in which people come together to undertake their activities. What is commonly termed the `voluntary sector' is an immensely rich and important area of collective activity in which participants, by and large, consume their own products free from the market economy. This paper is based on research which studied some of the myriad groups. It concludes by warning that current developments in public leisure policy could lead to an erosion of the strong subcultural identity and independence of the groups — not deliberately but as a result of ignorance of their dynamic, values and purposes. The danger is that we may reduce the complexity to a point where something as coherent and malleable as a `sector' does in fact appear.
Rationalism, with its associated dichotomies and continua, dominates contemporary leisure studies. Five particular characteristics of dichotomies that have directed and constrained a great deal of research in leisure are discussed and illustrated. Polarization, classification, simplification, exclusivity and objectivity have had seven undesirable (and usually unintended) consequences for leisure studies: the framing of research and policy questions within a pre-established value context; a tendency to aggregate presumed parallel dichotomies; an assumption of homogeneity; an emphasis upon separation rather than integration; a confusion between method and substance; a denial of context; and the elimination of spontaneity and chance. It is suggested that while the field has gained much from the construction of dichotomies and continuums, it has also suffered greatly from their inappropriate use. It is contended that rationalism is presently leading leisure studies down the path of ever continuing subdivision into more and more detailed dichotomies that take explanation further and further away from understanding. A plea is made for greater efforts at reintegration.
A significant body of research has emerged concerning issues of the professionalization of, and professionalism in, leisure. Much of this literature has focused on the political and/or technical dimensions of the leisure professional and the customers or citizens they purport to serve. In this paper we offer a moral philosophical account of the relations between the paradigmatic leisure profession, leisure management, and its clientele. An account of the varieties of paternalism is developed and a more specific picture of professional paternalism in the context of leisure professions is articulated, while stopping short of providing a justification for the autonomy – respectful and disrespectful forms that they can take. We characterize the relations as necessarily involving moral authority, and not merely technical expertise, as is commonly supposed.
The Stately Pleasure Dome, the state sponsored national exhibition, offers a moment at which a sense of national identity is publicly declared and presented as cause for national celebration. This paper charts the shifts in the mechanisms for funding, the framing of the 'British people', industry and the role of the monarch at three distinct historical moments. In case studies of the Great Exhibition, the Festival of Britain and the Millennium Experience, the paper assesses how each exhibition conceived the leisure experience of a good day out. The paper suggests that while each exhibition claimed historical continuity, the constructions of the British people, the monarchy and the nation change. The different modes of funding and the public participation in each event demonstrate that while they are presented as unchanging, there are clear revisions in the way that these concepts are understood. While the Great Exhibition could celebrate Queen and Empire without question, these terms needed to be reconfigured in the post-Second World War moment of the Festival of Britain, and still further in the globalized world of the new Millennium.
A psychological or state-of-mind conceptualization of leisure is shown to link leisure to the overall quality of life. As a consequence, the scope of the leisure professional is broadened and the interdisciplinary nature of leisure studies emphasized. Leisure lack, the chronic or temporary absence of the experience of leisure, is seen to be the result of either personal or societal factors and/or their interaction. Minimizing leisure lack is identified as the primary task of the leisure professional. The measurement of leisure (and leisure lack) is an essential condition of this endeavour.
This paper develops a critical and comparative analysis of the growth and demise of the spa industry in the two contrasting European business environments. These are, first, those market oriented systems of Anglo-Saxon capitalism developed during the English bourgeois revolution of the 17th century and, secondly, those systems of state-managed German capitalism developed during the industrial transformation of middle Europe in the 19th century. The paper highlights the fact that, while England witnessed the pioneering development of the modern spa resort, this industry failed to maintain its market position in the face of growing German competition. The paper critically evaluates conventional explanations for this decline which suggest that it was the inevitable consequence of the rise in fashionability of the English seaside resorts, and proposes an alternative explanation. This clearly indicates that English structures of capitalism were ill-adapted to facilitate the levels of planning, investment, control and innovation which were keys to the success of the German spa industry. Thus, in contrast with the English pioneering resorts which were primarily market led and private sector speculations, the German system of statemanaged capitalism produced a well resourced, innovative and attractive series of modern resort destinations. Until 1914 they attracted the patronage of an international elite, including English monarchs who were the lineal descendants of those Georgian kings who had once patronized the English pioneering innovation, the spa resorts of conspicuous leisure consumption.
This note describes the conceptual importance of 'serious' leisure while highlighting its theoretical weaknesses when speaking both to and from the experiences of women in the Sea Cadet Corps (a uniformed youth organization). I claim that although women's experiences challenge some of the assumptions made by serious leisure, the concept of serious leisure remains, as yet, a positive framework in which these experiences may be grounded. It is, however, my contention that Stebbins (1982) concept is in need of a politicizing and critical analysis, and that this is provided by a feminist critique of engendered power relations.
This paper summarizes the rhetoric of national unity which has characterized the emerging concern of the Canadian federal government with questions of sport and leisure. It is argued that the state, in the post-World War II period, began to include sport and leisure as part of its perceived responsibility in the sphere of social welfare. Yet in its concern with the construction of a coherent national identity, the state developed a view of sport which is highly compatible with the media's presentation of it as commodified entertainment. The contradictions of this position are examined in a discussion of television's presentation of the Grey Cup, the national football final. It is shown that sport and leisure, seen by the state during the last four decades as a means of welfare for the population generally, takes on an ideological emphasis embodying the ambivalences of the `national'.
Since 1982, the year the serious leisure perspective was first set out, the concept of casual leisure has served mostly as a foil for sharpening understanding of that framework. Yet casual leisure is a distinctive activity in itself and an important part of the contemporary leisure scene, suggesting that it, too, should be conceptually elaborated just as serious leisure was earlier. Thus the principal goal of this article is to present a theoretical statement defining casual leisure as a separate field demarcated by its own special properties. To this end, a definition of casual leisure is presented after which its six types are described. This is followed by a section on hedonism and other rewards and one on deviant leisure, both casual and serious.
The Olympic Games have emerged as a significant catalyst of urban change and can act as a key instrument of urban policy for their host cities. This paper reviews the effect of the Games on the built environment of the various cities which have acted as hosts in the modern Olympic period (1896-1996) and assesses the preparations now being made for the Games in Sydney in the year 2000. The review indicates that the Games have been increasingly used as a trigger for a wide range of urban improvements, although there have been considerable variations in the scale of infrastructural investment and in the public-private sector mix.
This paper calls for a revisionist reading of the thesis of the leisure class. Veblen's great work The Theory of the Leisure Class (1899) argued that society is ruled by a leisure class. The primary identifying characteristics of this class are prodigious wealth, voluntary abnegation from pecuniary labour and conspicuous consumption. Veblen's argument suggested the decomposition of the work ethic because the characteristics cultivated by the rich would be emulated by the lower orders. Schor's The Overworked American (1991) work suggests that overwork, not leisure is one of the primary identifying characteristics of postwar culture. The article uses statistical and biographical data on the rich today to provide a counterpoint to Veblen's thesis. It is argued that the rich are not characterized by a rejection of work. On the contrary the richest people in the world typically work longer hours than the average. For these individuals work adopts a play form which probably contrasts sharply with wider social experience. Data on the leisure of Bill Gates, Warren Buffett and Richard Branson is examined to assemble a position on leisure and the rich which contrasts with the Veblen thesis.
Leisure constraint literature has typically assumed that constraints prevent or modify participation in leisure. In this paper, I take up the work of Michel Foucault (1926–1984) to show that social constraints are not merely restricting of leisure practices. When constraints are characterized as enabling as well as restricting, it is possible to explore when and how constraints enable and to plan to intervene with enabling constraints to improve the opportunities for participation. In order to show both the enabling and restricting effects of social constraints, the focus of the paper is first on how structural constraints of a leisure activity may restrict or enable participants. Next, as another way to emphasize that social constraints are enabling of leisure experience, Michel Foucault's work is taken up to demonstrate how constraints enable skill within a structure. Finally, structural constraints of identity are shown to impact on participation prior to engagement with a leisure experience.
This paper looks at the holiday experiences of women with young children. It attempts to unfold the meaning of that experience, looking particularly at the contradiction of a work-filled event being accepted as a holiday experience. Women with young children do not have uniform holiday experiences or perceptions of those experiences. Some women will define the experience as a holiday only if they are away from family obligations; other women will consider the relative rest and the opportunity of being able to have quality time as a mother or partner as meaningful and worthwhile. The two key features of the holiday for women with young children were the reduction in pressure and the sharing of time in key relationships and roles. However, the overall scenario was one of little support for women to construct a holiday and an absence of dialogue regarding the right to holidays. As work and relationship are an integral part of the holiday experience, the findings question the relevance of the continued use of the work/leisure dichotomy in leisure theory.
This paper is an exploratory investigation of the travel motivations of gay and lesbian tourists. Based on in-depth interviews and focus groups, it investigates the interrelationships between sexuality, tourism behaviour and tourism spaces. Given that public space is controlled and heterosexualized, the paper suggests that whilst gay and lesbian people are motivated to travel for a range of reasons, such is the power of the dominant heterosexual milieu that their sexuality has a critical impact on their tourism choices. The need for safety, to feel comfortable with like-minded people, and to escape from heterosexism – often to specifically gay spaces – emerge as key influences on their choice of holiday.
In current sociological analyses of tourist experience, class, race, ethnicity, age and gender are being incorporated into frameworks which initially assumed that male views of the phenomenon are universal. In this paper we seek to incorporate gender into the fundamental conceptualization of the tourist and the tourist destination. Drawing on concepts from interactionist and poststructural feminist theories we critique the male bias in the conceptualization of the tourist as 'flaneur' and the tourist desination as 'image' for the tourist gaze. A concept of the tourist destination as 'chora', or interactive space is offered. The tourist then becomes a creative, interacting 'choraster' who takes home an experience which impacts on the self in some way. We suggest that such a feminized conceptualization adds a second dimension to the one dimensional perspective which predominates in current sociological analyses of the tourist phenomenon.
This paper focuses on women's leisure in city urban space. It draws on feminist discourses around 'difference' and cultural geography that explores public space as a gendered, sexualized and racialized arena. Empirically the paper discusses two case studies of women's leisure in the city: older women and 'young' mothers including a specific sample of South Asian mothers. The research suggests that although there is an obvious plurality of meanings attached to leisure and a plurality of sites where this takes place, thus providing evidence of the fragmentation of women's experiences, there remain a combination of structural factors that have varying influences on women's leisure opportunities in an urban context. The challenge for leisure studies is to complement its already multidisciplinary base by drawing on work that opens up the complexities of space, not merely in the recognition of 'new' lifestyles and the conspicuous consumption of leisure but also, as a site for the maintenance and reproduction of complex power relations, in this instance, primarily those of gender and 'race'.
Professional status is not an inherent property of an occupational group but refers to a particular set of relationships with others. Current debates about the nascent `profession' in public sector leisure services tend to operate with a restricted view of the `politics of professionalism' and exaggerate the autonomy of proto-professional organizations. Professional status is determined by and determinate of the relationships between leisure service personnel, established local government professions, the political process and the general public. This article examines the nature of some of these relationships and in particular the increasing managerial emphasis on consumerism and the consumer and attempts to reassert the importance of the citizen.
Despite differing domain assumptions, the various perspectives in leisure studies have largely concentrated on providing a negative critique of ideologies of consumerism and the supposed "passivity" of commercial leisure, often juxtaposed to the supposedly more "participatory" and inclusive nature of public leisure provision. This concern with the mode of production and access has resulted in a failure to develop systematic sociological understandings of acts of consumption. It has also limited theoretical and empirical exploration of the extent to which new forms of consumerism may have served to re-define "leisure citizenship" and the relationship between leisure and social exclusion. The article reviews the various perspectives and suggests that, despite differing domain assumptions there is a growing recognition within leisure studies of the need to move beyond a political defence of the "excluded" to develop an empirically grounded sociological understanding of modern leisure forms.
This paper argues that much theorizing and research in leisure studies takes place within a normative citizenship paradigm which regards public leisure provision as a central component of social citizenship and largely ignores the predominantly commercial nature of modern leisure. This combines with a reproductionist, society in leisure, approach to emphasize leisure as an area of inequality and inequity with a consequent downplaying of issues relating to the nature of leisure experiences. The assumption that public leisure provision is necessarily about the extension of citizenship rights is questioned by examining the centrality of the merit good rationale and suggesting that the leisure studies' defence of recreational welfare and leisure needs is not wholly coherent. It suggests that certain approaches within leisure studies risk proposing welfare without citizenship and over-estimating the role of public leisure facilities as a component of citizenship. It concludes that what is needed is the exploration of issues of consumer authority and the changing relationship between public and commercial provision in the mixed economy of leisure.
This paper reports some preliminary research on women and holidays carried out in the summer of 1994 in Lancaster, a city in the north west of England. The research, which involved interviewing an opportunity sample of 54 women visitors and residents on the streets of Lancaster, attempted to explore holidays as an aspect of engendered leisure. The analysis makes use of theories about space, place and time as well as ideas about the tourist gaze and deindustrialized and restructured cities. It is suggested that the issue of women and holidays raises important questions about gender relations in households, but it is also argued that theories about tourism and places which ignore gender cannot offer a satisfactory account of how women consume places and regard time and space. In conclusion, the paper sketches ideas about how future research on women and holidays might be conducted.
Karaoke's mimetic character can provide a conduit for personal growth and interpersonal empathy. Yet karaoke is not always understood this way, and one factor determining how it is understood is social class. Karaoke's class markers have been clear, though very different, in Eastern and Western cultures. Whereas in Japan karaoke first became popular among the upper-middle class, in the US it was popularized by the working and lower-middle classes. As karaoke gained a following among working-class Americans it was often shunned by the urban middle class. Yet by the late 1990s an alternative aesthetic of karaoke, characterized by an ironic performance style, developed among middle-class urbanites. This essay attempts to describe these opposing styles of mimetic and ironic performance, to explain the motives behind them, and to consider what happens when they come into contact.
This article investigates the role played by holiday home owners in shaping leisure/tourism places. Having reviewed recent trends in the holiday home literature, the paper argues that the literature has failed to adequately consider how this group of actors can play a role in developing leisure/tourism places. The research is case study based and reports the findings of a study undertaken in Courtown, a small seaside resort in the Republic of Ireland. Specifically, it investigates the role that holiday home owners played in a controversy that arose with respect to developing tourism accommodation in an area of woodlands. In this case, a local business alliance proposed and planned to undertake this development with the stated aim of improving tourism facilities in the area. The main opposition came from holiday home owners who formed the Save Courtown Woods Campaign. Research questions posed include what motivated the latter's involvement? What sources of power did they draw upon? How did their actions change the local area? The study found that holiday home owners as an identifiable group of actors must not be ignored as potentially important players in the shaping of local development paths. They were committed to protecting the amenity value of the area and achieved their campaign aims by securing an agreement that no development would occur on 55% of the woodland area. A key factor underpinning the group's ability to effectively engage in the local development process was the degree to which they had kinship and social connections with the local area. These gave the group an 'insider-outsider' status that enabled them to access decision-making channels. Social status was found to play a particular role in this respect, facilitating linkages between holiday home owners and the local business and political elites. Social relationships were formative influences shaping the actions taken by the holiday home owners and in particular, may have played a part in limiting their opposition to development in the area.
Hartmann (1986) distinguishes tourist destinations and recreation resources in terms of seasonal patterns. This paper argues that the distinction made by Hartmann is overly simple. Using brief examples — a Country Park in England and a resort on a Spanish island — it is demonstrated that greater consideration needs to be given to the functions of resources in terms of what they provide, rather than in terms of whom they provide for and for how long.
The subject of this paper is the emotions which are aroused in sport and leisure and their significance for a full sociological understanding of sport and leisure behaviour and sport and leisure institutions. The paper deals more with sport than leisure in general and is primarily conceptual and theoretical in its focus. It advances the claim that a 'figurational' (or 'process-sociological') approach, above all Elias's theory of 'civilizing processes' (Elias, 1939; l994a), whilst by no means representing a panacea for all of sociology's current problems, does represent a means of circumventing and hopefully overcoming some of the dilemmas on the horns of which practitioners of our subject recurrently become impaled.
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John Horne
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