Leisure came into economic analysis by the back door. Even Veblen, in whose primary title (1899) leisure had the primary place, was not much interested in it except insofar as leisure embodied the idleness and waste of resources in ‘pecuniary emulation’ that were the motive and the trophy of the moneyed class. In the subsequent and more serious analytical business of sorting out the response of labour supply to changing real wages begun by Knight (1921) and Pigou (1920) and continued by Robbins (1930), leisure was introduced but only as a residual; the time left over when time spent working had been accounted for. Leisure became a consumption good. It needed only simple characteristics; to be sufficiently (if vaguely) pleasing that, when set against income, as all other consumption goods, it would generate a nicely behaved indifference curve in time-income space and hence a determinate allocation of time to work.
KeywordsIncome Beach Tempo Baumol
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