Date of Award

Spring 1978

Document Type

Dissertation - Restricted

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



First Advisor

Schmidtlein, Rozanne

Second Advisor

Bernier, Normand

Third Advisor

Dupuis, Adrian M.


Leisure as an element in society, with its implications for quality living, is dealt with to a significant degree in the literature of Sociology and Psychology. In depth and meaningful discussion of the topic is in the literature of Education in spite of the fact that "wholesome use of leisure time" has been identified as a purpose of Education since 1918. This study explores the semantics of leisure and related terms as well as concepts of leisure itself. Beyond the analysis the study reviews the traditional value of the work ethic as it is transmitted through the institution of Education. Productivity and payoff have been an outgrowth of the processes of social change including urbanization, mechanization, secularization and industrialization. The production/consumer life style model has identified leisure as a time slot and a payoff or reward for hard work. Throughout time changes have been accelerated or inhibited by social institutions and by individuals. The study addresses the effects of each. Selected leaders are studied and their contributions to change in leisure--its meaning and relation to culture--noted. Schools have transmitted the "work ethic" as a tradition and cultural element, a value. Current literature refers to a new "leisure ethic" emerging as the work ethic becomes obsolete in a post industrial society. Concurrent with the leisure ethic is a new leisure life style. The study identifies this as a deemphasis on time slots for work and non-work activities. A new "flow of living" concept is implied with a focus on the personal and continuous growth of the individual Such growth is an outcome of attitude as well as activity. The new leisure ethic and its implications for Education are analyzed in relation to two emerging patterns and processes of Education, Open Classroom and Community Education. The potentials of each structure are reviewed in terms of capacity to transmit a leisure ethic. In addition to the leisure ethic, the effectiveness of each in facilitating change from a producer/consumer societal model to a self-motivated, creative learning society is discussed. The study suggests future explorations which may be indicated, current issues and conflicts existing and roadblocks to change.



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