Total Work #58: Concluding Chapter: A New…

Dear all, As a gift, I’d like to offer you a copy of the final chapter of my book on Total Work. May you be well, Andrew Conclusion: A New Aristocracy I. Desultory Faux-leisure In The Theory of the Leisure Class (1899), American sociologist Thorstein Veblen put forward his scathing critique of “conspicuous leisure” and “conspicuous consumption.” The “leisure class,” he saw, flexed their social power and status through sophisticated optics. Their distance from the working class was starkly visible in their antipathy toward anything smacking of work. Wealth bought them time and possessions, and both allowed them to show themselves off. Rather than simply having portraits painted of them, they themselves could become the portraits worthy of the admiration, and the envy, of others. They were, in a sense, what they wore.

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