Markus Tauschek

Resilience through leisure?

Ethnographic findings on an ambivalent relationship


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Resilience has recently become an expansive concept in political, economic and scientific fields. The normative and ideological dimensions underlying this concept and the resulting cultural effects have hardly been the subject of empirically grounded research in cultural studies so far, although resilience discourses have long been materializing in everyday and living environments. Using the example of courses that promise actors a life with more leisure, this article asks how ideas of resilience are communicated, made plausible and critically negotiated in this specific field. To what extent is the increased attractiveness of the concept of leisure as a specific form of the qualification of temporal experience related to ideas of a resilient self? How are ideas of a fundamentally deficient self in need of optimization expressed here, and what kind of solutions are being sought for which social problems? The article assumes that both the concept of leisure and that of resilience cocreate, on a discursive level, the problems, challenges and crises to which they respond.

resilience, self-optimization, leisure, work-life balance, body concepts, mindfulness, blurring boundaries of work

APA citation
Tauschek M. (2021). Resilience through leisure?: Ethnographic findings on an ambivalent relationship. Journal for European Ethnology and Cultural Analysis, 6(2), 139-158.