After Work: A History of the Home and the Fight for Free Time by Helen Hester
A timely manifesto for a feminist post-work politics
Does it ever feel like you have no free time? You come home after work and instead of finding a space of rest and relaxation, you're confronted by a pile of new tasks to complete - cooking, cleaning, looking after the kids, and so on.
In this ground-breaking book, Helen Hester and Nick Srnicek lay out how unpaid work in our homes has come to take up an ever-increasing portion of our lives - how the vacuum of free time has been taken up by vacuuming. Examining the history of the home over the past century - from running water to white goods to smart homes - they show how repeated efforts to reduce the burden of this work have faced a variety of barriers, challenges, and reversals.
Charting the trajectory of our domestic spaces over the past century, Hester and Srnicek consider new possibilities for the future, uncovering the abandoned ideas of anti-housework visionaries and sketching out a path towards real free time for all, where everyone is at liberty to pursue their passions, or do nothing at all. It will require rethinking our living arrangements, our expectations and our cities.
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