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Re: [ox-en] "Play" (was: Re: The Abolition of Work)

Benni Bärmann wrote:

Recommended reading: "Homo Ludens" by Johan Huizinga. I am shure,
there is an english translation avaiable. 

There is. Both articles quoted in the discussion so far refer to it. :-)

(I haven't read it yet, BTW, but I guess I will.)

The play we would want to base a society on is paida-play. But since

My wrong. It's paidia, not paida.

English doesn't make the distinction (nor does German, for that matter),
I feel the word is not clear enough. In other words, I fear that
replacing "work" by "play" could be mistaken or subverted to mean
promoting competing all the time for all sorts of resources. I
understand the die-hard capitalists as promoting competition as
agon-play (even if they may not use the word play).

I disagree on this. We had a large disussion about competition vs.
cooperation on the german list (in fact more than one ;-). Your
statement is near to what Stefan Mn. thinks about competition. My view
is different:

For me competition and cooperation exists together in a dialectical
sense. They need eachother. There is nothing "good" in cooperation and
nothing "evil" in competition and both does not exist in pure forms.
[T]here _is_ competition in free software. Competition
about the best solution of a problem, for example.

I agree, but that's not what I meant. What I meant was the competition
where one tries to drive the other out of business, tries to cut off the
other's way of making a living, so to speak. Ok, I should have been
clearer here (I *have* witnessed the last competition discussion on [ox]
;-) ). Another way to put my point is: Play can be taken as
self-realization, not paying attention at the cost to others: if the
manager sees their work as a game, they try to win it no matter what
they or others lose on the way. Maybe that's my problem with it: that I
see capitalists using the idea of agon-play to justify self-realization
at the expense of others, making the decision-maker look "playful."

The gambling aspect of stock markets mentioned in the other thread is a
very good example. I have this metaphor going through my head that
they're "gambling with the lifes of other people" but see it as a
wonderful game.

Well, 'nuff said. Using "play" may yet work; I have mixed feelings about
it, but then, I have read the essay I've cited quite a while ago and it
*has* shaped my thinking about the issue...

- Benja

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