Through a close look at events observed in three Guadeloupean voluntary associations—a retirees' club, a youth group, and a dance club—this essay examines the politics of leisure activities, helping to illuminate the ways that social capital operates in associations and how politics permeates everyday life on the French island of Guadeloupe. I consider the ways that Putnam's view of social capital differs from Bourdieu's. I argue associations are an important source of social capital for some marginalized members of Guadeloupean society who convert this social capital into economic, political, or social advancement. At the same time, social capital is unevenly accessible within associations and it operates in a context of political patronage. My data suggests that we need to rethink the concept of social capital to account for the complexity of the ways it works in society.
Social Capital and the Politics of Leisure in Guadeloupean Associations
Landscapes of Infinite Horizons
The aim of this article is to explore the Danish seaside as a culturally framed arena of experience. In the first part of the article, I present the appearance of Denmark's seaside as a recreational location for the Danish middle class. Using Danish films that portray the middle class on holiday, the article illustrates the perceptual consequences of a specific appropriation of the landscape. The analysis of the relationship between landscape and people then introduces anthropological perspectives on time, consumption, and perception. Drawing on ethnographic interviews and comparative observations, I show how accessing and consuming the landscape as a recreational location come to constitute it as a finite arena of infinite time and space, as well as a distinct location that allows for equal social relations.
This article shows how native people in remote Siberian settlements address social distress in their communities by transmitting local knowledge through organizing leisure activities for children and youth. The author examines the rationale, discourses, and practices of indigenous activists to establish vacation camps and unpacks young people's narratives of how they relate to this particular leisure activity. The camps are creative sites of cultural production and social hubs for participants. While young people are open to influences of popular cultures available in urban centers and villages, they contrast the social solidarity of the vacation forest camps with the individualization and social distress in villages and towns.
Relationships between Tourism and Work among Young Canadians in Edinburgh
Working holiday-maker programmes have facilitated a growing cohort of mobile young people who have an ambiguous status as both worker and tourist. Drawing on ethnographic fieldwork conducted among Canadian working holiday-makers in Scotland, this paper shows how working holiday-makers are situated in an ambiguous, contradictory position as working tourists, and are streamlined towards particular social and professional fields in which work-leisure boundaries are blurred. Although these blurred boundaries seem contradictory, they benefit employers who require an educated yet temporary work-force, while also meeting the desires of working holiday-makers for a lifestyle that is flexible, social, far from the pressures of friends and family, and that puts them in regular contact with other young foreigners who, like them, are at transitional points in life.
Working-Class Boyhood and the Policing of Play in Belle Époque Paris
By the end of the nineteenth century, working-class children increasingly fell under adult supervision. Working-class boys, however, retained much autonomy over their leisure time. By examining memoirs and police archives, this article shows that boys’ play often flirted with the criminal or the dangerous. When boys entered the workplace, this reputation for lawless play followed them. Drawing on accident reports, this article demonstrates that employers and republican labor inspectors blamed boys for dangerous workplace accidents by highlighting boys’ playful nature. The article concludes by showing how reformers constructed spaces for boys’ leisure in an attempt to tame and direct their play. I argue that this reckless play became one of the defining characteristics of working-class boyhood both within peer society and to external observers. Regulating boys’ play thus became a way to ensure that they matured seamlessly into worker-citizens.
Automobility in the United Kingdom in the period before the First World War moved from irrelevance and ridicule to a normalized leisure activity. With particular reference to the magazines Punch and Motor, this article argues that this process was hastened by middle- and lower-middle-class consumers' receptivity to the automobile and motorcycle, particularly in the period after 1905 when a tolerable mechanical reliability had been achieved. By buying second-hand, and taking short trips and camping weekends, the self-driving, car-owning “modest motorist“ undermined the formal, club-based network of elite motorists and created their own distinct cultural model.
Place, Desire, and Country Girlhood
This article explores the figure of the bored country girl that appears widely in popular culture but also in girls studies and rural studies through ethnographic research in Australian country towns. While the presumption that country girls lack resources and opportunities for entertainment and leisure is in many ways empirically valid, this problem's articulation in girls' lives also offers an important perspective from which to ask what boredom and cultural needs mean, relative to each other, for both rural studies and girls studies. This article suggests that girlhood's relation to policy discourse and urbanized modernity can be productively reconsidered through the lived experience of country girls.
Mark McKinney and Hervé (Baru) Baruleau
This is the second portion of an interview with Hervé Barulea, or Baru, one of the most accomplished French cartoonists living today, conducted at his home in France on 15 July 2011. The first part of the interview was published in European Comic Art 4.1 (fall 2011), 213-237. Baru talks here about a broad range of important topics, including autobiography, the roles of work and leisure in his comics, boxing (his focus in two comics), the society of the spectacle, representations of women and minorities in comics, the heritage of classic French and Belgian comics (series such as Tintin, Yves-le-Loup ['Ivan-the-Wolf'] and Spirou) and the clear-line drawing style, experimentation by Oubapo, space, his drawing style and techniques for making comics, his current and future projects, his former teaching position in the Ecole des beaux-arts in Nancy, and the relationship of comics to fine art.
Back to the Eighteenth Century
Giuli Liebman Parrinello
Although a great deal has been written about the constantly debated relationship between tourist and traveler (tourism and travel) with often quite different ideological approaches being adopted, nevertheless consensus still seems to be a distant reality. In this article, the reasons for this apparent theoretical impasse are explored by tracing its historical origins. Most scholars agree that tourism as a modern phenomenon appeared on the horizon of Western European society in the second half of the eighteenth century, thereby allowing a broad historical and dualistic conceptualization of tourism, which added to its dynamic characteristic (travel) a notion of temporary sojourn including leisure (villeggiatura, spas, etc.). The background of an articulated Enlightenment revealed not only a new anthropological curiosity about the Other, but also features like conspicuous consumption and eudaemonism, which played and continue to exert a fundamental role in the tourism of yesterday and today. Furthermore, the emerging dialectic between the new social actor (the tourist) and the movement (tourism) can currently be read as a substantial and dramatic “figuration“ (Elias 1978a), encompassing unforeseen consequences within the framework of communication.
State-building and the mobilization of labor versus leisure on a European Union border
By comparing the spatial organization of Swedish labor and leisure practices today with the movements and stereotypes tied to previous generations of Sweden's sizeable population of so-called "vagrants," this article studies the impact of state policy on the spatial imagination of both citizens and other sojourners within its bounds. Because the ethnographic research for the article took place in a new transnational city that is being created by the European Union and various local proponents, the article then considers the same issue at the EU level, to pursue the question of the EU's "state-ness" and the status of migrant laborers within that emerging polity.