Alasdair George S. Clayre


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A British academic, Prize Fellow of All Souls College, Oxford, whose publications included Work and Play: Ideas and Experience of Work and Leisure (1975). This was an innovative attempt to identify the importance of an aesthetics of everyday life in which forms of play are central to human expressivity. Clayre cited sympathetically the German philosopher Friedrich Schiller (1759–1805), whose Aesthetic Letters sought to show that ‘the source of our energy and our wholeness, even in aspects of our life that seem to have no connection with “play”, may lie in an unpossessive relationship to something loved, outside ourselves and…detached from our practical interests’. For Schiller, one paradigm of play is the making of art and its enjoyment. Forms of games and sports undoubtedly have the capacity to express such pleasures, to express humanity and wholeness, as opposed to the fragmentary and alienating activities of everyday working life.

Subjects: Sport and Leisure.

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