Friday, October 14, 2011

Work Vrs Labour

(This post is not considered as apart of my six posts and therefore is not for marking, just my own knowledge/ learning) 
What is the difference between work and labour? "Work is the activity which corresponds to the unnaturalness of human existence" (Arendt, 1958, p.7) whilst "Labour is the activity which corresponds to the biological process of the human body" (Arendt, 1958, p.7). 
I am a member of the Hamilton Gospel Choir. This commitment falls under Ardent's 1958 definition of an act of 'work' as my involvement a personal choice, does not fulfill the physiological needs defined by Maslow's Hierarchy and is not a normal or required part of the natural biological process (Benson,& Dundis, 2003; Arendt, 1958). In joining this group I become a performer, a worshiper of God, a soprano and a singer. As a member of this choir I am a part of a new family and community that I previously was not. Although this cannot be defined as labour because there is no real physical need for me to belong to  this choir, I feel it joins me to a community that helps me in taking time out and relaxing from my other commitments such as study (Arendt, 1958). Personally this is an important part of keeping a healthy balance in my life.  If I did not do this activity I would no longer feel a part of the choir community, I would lose my connections and links with the choir family.  Spiritually I would lose an opportunity to worship and connect with God; which is important to me. I would also lose another piece of my weekly choir tradition; having dinner with Anna-Maree prior to choir every week.  However, if I were not involved with choir, I would have more time to do my studies and complete the other responsibilities that I have. 

Arendt, H. (1958). The human condition. Chicago: Chicago University Press. 

Benson, S. G., & Dundis, S. P. (2003). Understanding and motivating health care  employees: integrating Maslow's Hierarchy of needs, training and technology. Journal of Nursing Management, 11(1), 315-320. 

1 comment:

  1. Hi Erin,
    I really enjoyed this post. One thing I learnt is how signing for you is classified as work and not labour even though for you it is something that you clearly need in your life to make you who you are.
    You could improve this post by addressing the fact that labour is something you would need for survival for example food, water, shelter? Just a suggestion :-)