In How to Be Idle, Tom Hodgkinson presents his learned yet whimsical argument for a new universal standard of living: being happy doing nothing. He covers a. How to be Idle is Tom Hodgkinson’s entertaining guide to reclaiming your right to be idle. As Oscar Wilde said, doing nothing is hard work. Buy How to be Idle by Tom Hodgkinson (ISBN: ) from Amazon’s Book Store. Everyday low prices and free delivery on eligible orders.

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Apr 14, M.

How to Be Idle

The best parts of this for me were the parts where the author identifies a historical tradition of idling via famous writers and philosophers. And oh how badly I want these distinctions to be made! Instead, he provides the boosterish Chamber of Commerce version of idling, concentrating on the good stuff, ignoring the waste, the slag, the runoff and the pollution of true idleness.

Hudson rated it liked it. Books of the Week. Library fines be damned. He founded and runs a magazine The Idler. Inside Hodginson hodgkinsoon philosophy, historical information and personal anecdotes all relating to idleness and the effects of work culture on society.

How can this be? Jun 07, Hope rated it liked it Shelves: However, what came out as the idlee characteristic of this was the fact that this really wasn’t a self-help book, and I didn’t feel any stronger or keener on enjoying my apparent wretchedness, so the book ended up being very hollow even though so much different kinds of information was stacked on it.

View all 6 comments. As was his mocking of going to the gym or jogging. I had forgotten that Neitzsche extolled laziness and hey, it makes me feel better about the time I spend doing absolutely nothing when there are certified brainiacs sayings it’s good. Of course, he’s also an Englishman so his ability to avoid the full-on career is augmented a bit by the universal health-care he enjoys.


As a person who did not grow up in the States, I have lived in cultures that celebrated two hour lunches and lots of vacation time, and I have never really understood the American work-obsessed culture. Tom Hodgkinson’s How to Be Idle: Who would I recommend this book to?

He credits capitalism and Christianity with “ruining everyone’s fun” by elevating work above leisure. Feeling morally wrong about taking a sick or personal day, idls go to work while sick, and even take medicine to g Tom Hodgkinson’s How to Be Idle: A weird book, with an interesting message.

Books by Tom Hodgkinson. The book would have worked better for me if H. Caught up in consumerism, Americans no longer work to eat, but instead eat to work.

And it is certainly fun, and funny, and clever, and light-hearted. Now it’s eat as fast as you can, to be a loyal and competent ” worker ” “. Also, the quotes and passages from philosophers, poets and writers were very good and made parts of this book a g I love being idle.

Anyway… so this book has 24 chapters, one for each hour of the day, with each chapter covering a different topic. All of us just want to appreciate the time of now, why be bother by that silly thing called ” work “?

Leisure and loafing will take care of the rest. The title alone hooked me but as I began reading I realized I had picked up a gem of a book that was more than just about being idle.

Not only that, but a nap can offer a glimpse into a twilight nether world where gods play and dreams happen. So why was this chapter here?

What matters to us is our person and our well-being, fuck the others, i gotta rush quickly to my precious work. My clenched fist shakes in your general direction.


Sep 03, Lavinia rated it really liked it Recommends it for: I think this would be a great book for the newly retired because you still feel like you should be doing something, keep busy, volunteer!

No trivia or quizzes yet. Don’t make yourself miserable working long hours, drinking coffee at your desk to stay awake, just so you can Buy More Stuff and feed the capitalist system. A much better treatise on the subject is Josef Pieper’s Leisure: To ask other readers questions about How to Be Idleplease sign up. The greatest strength of this book is that it gives you a warm feeling that things you enjoy – beer gardens, sleeping etc – are actually really good for you.

Welcome to the world of Idling – When one can, in a joyfull and entertaining way, amuse himself by just. He divides the book into the 24 hours of a day of what an idler does–fishing and tea and sleeping in, for example.

How to Be Idle by Tom Hodgkinson

Eat, sleep, keep warm. Personally I would recommend it though as I found each chapter was either entertaining or education or many times both.

Lists with This Book.

This era of mass production with time as a mere commodity can be changed if people take on board the ideas of this book and adjust their lives hodgoinson suit their soul and not their bank balance. Also, okay, I’m going to lay into this guy because it’s fun: It reinforced the suspicion that I was getting idling advice from a kid… But of course Hodgkinson himself is no idler.