Anti-work

SourcedEdit

  • The idea of the "job" as the answer to all woes, individual and social, is one of the most pernicious myths of modern society.
    • How to be Idle, Tom Hodgkinson (2005)
  • It has become an article of the creed of modern morality that all labour is good in itself; a convenient belief to those who live on the wealth of others
  • If work were so pleasant, the rich would keep it for themselves
  • Freedom begins where work ends
    • Work and the Free Society, Anarchist Federation UK Pamphlet
  • What is work? Work is of two kinds: first, altering the position of matter at or near the earth's surface relatively to other such matter; second, telling other people to do so.
  • Modern methods of production have given us the possibility of ease and security for all; we have chosen, instead, to have overwork for some and starvation for the others. Hitherto we have continued to be as energetic as we were before there were machines; in this we have been foolish, but there is no reason to go on being foolish for ever.


  • Can one live without working? We can only live without working.
    • In Conversation with Raoul Vaneigem, The Idler 34 (2004)
  • "Arbeit macht frei" is a German phrase meaning "work brings freedom" or "work shall set you free/will free you" or "work liberates" and, literally in English, "work makes (one) free". The slogan is known for being placed at the entrances to a number of Nazi concentration camps.
  • Like Christ, the doleful personification of ancient slavery, the men, the women and the children of the proletariat have been climbing painfully for a century up the hard Calvary of pain; for a century compulsory toil has broken their bones, bruised their flesh, tortured their nerves; for a century hunger has torn their entrails and their brains. 0 Laziness, have pity on our long misery! O Laziness, mother of the arts and noble virtues, be thou the balm of human anguish!
    • The Right to be Lazy, Paul Lafargue (1883)
  • No one should ever work. Workers of the world... relax!
    • The Abolition of Work, Bob Black (1985)
  • Ali G: "unemployment is wicked because you get money for doin' nothing" Tony Benn: "What do you mean? This idea that you're unemployed because you're lazy is rubbish." Ali G: "Me ain't saying that it's cause you lazy, me saying you wanna chill, whatever, y'know?"
    • Ali G interview with Tony Benn
  • I find even the thought of work unbearable. Masters and workers both are peasants. There's no difference between a hand holding a pen and a hand pushing a plow. An age of hands!- I'll have no part in it.
    • Bad Blood, Arthur Rimbaud (A Season in Hell, 1873)

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Last modified on 5 January 2014, at 08:57