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Work, Labor, Play by Auden - Essay Example

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Work and labor are two terms, which are quite often, used interchangeably. However, these are entirely different terms when one would analyze it deeply. According to Hannah Arendt “as opposed to ‘work’, ‘labor’ does not designate a finished object, product or durable object. …
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Work, Labor, Play by Auden
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"Work, Labor, Play by Auden"

Download file to see previous pages nished object, product or durable object. The focus is more on the activities making up the process of producing something rather than on the ?nished object” (Maycroft). In other words, work can be said to be done if a finished product is obtained out of the work. On the other hand, it is not necessary that labor produces any finished product. According to Stephen Palmquist, “labor is any form of life-sustaining effort that is rooted in the "biological process". Work is any form of creative productivity that results in "worldliness"” (Palmquist). In scientific terms, work is said to be done only of the object changes displaces from its initial position. If the object is not displaced, we cannot say that work is done. In that case, we can use the term labor instead of work. In short, work and labor are controversial terms, which are difficult to define. WH Auden in his article, “work, labor, play”, has defined work, labor and play in different manner. This paper analyses the differences between work and labor and the relationship play has with work and labor. According to Auden, “A man is a labourer if the job society offers him is of no interest to himself but he is compelled to take it by the necessity of earning a living and supporting his family” (Auden)....
Between labour and play stands work. A man is a worker if he is personally interested in the job which society pays him to do; what from the point of view of society is necessary labour is from his own point of view voluntary play (Auden). Play is the activity people often undertake because of their interest. David Beckham is a Football player who plays Football because of his interest in it. Same way, Sachin Tendulkar is a cricket player since he enjoys cricket as a player. However, we cannot label either Sachin or Beckham as labours or workers even though they are doing lot of hard works while playing. It is a fact that they are getting decent money for their work as cricket or football player. Even then, it is impossible to mark them as workers. On the other hand, Steve Jobs and Bill Gates can be labelled as workers. They are excellent professionals who work with enthusiasm and interest in their profession. It is difficult for Gates or Jobs to excel in a sales or accounting profession. If these people somehow forced to work in sales or accounting profession, we cannot label them as workers anymore. In such cases, they are only labourers according to the arguments of Auden. In short, play is an activity, which is done fully for enjoyment purpose whereas labour is an activity which is done only for wages; not for enjoyment. Auden argues that the position of work is in between these two; play and labour. In other words, work is done not only for wages but also for enjoyment. Leisure is another activity in which workers and labourers differ widely. According to the views of Auden, “to a worker, leisure means simply the hours he needs to relax and rest in order to work efficiently whereas to the labourer, leisure means freedom from ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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