Labour Day

This week-end is the labour day week-end.

Labour Day was an outcome of the eight hour day movement. This movement, which began in the mid 1800s, proposed a system which advocated eight hours for work, eight hours for recreation, and eight hours for rest. Some interesting background on the eight hour day can be found here, here and here.

Stonemasons and building workers in Australia held an organized protest in 1855. They were successful in achieving an eight hour work day with no loss of pay. That event is generally recognized as the inspiration for labour day.

And so what have we achieved since then? Most people I know have no real separation from career and the concept of an eight hour day is simply out of context with the expectations of the modern work environment.

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