Nick Rosen | |
Tom Hodgkinson
Works too hard

Author Tom Hodgkinson is a mass of contradictions  famously lazy, he still finds time to write a book a year. He moves in caf society but never misses an opportunity to denounce smart metropolitan living, white middle classes rushing about their business  himself included.

How to be free contains his latest clarion call to down-shifting, as he expounds both the philosophy and lifestyle of slacking. His code could be summed up as Freedom through Merriment.

Light a Candle he implores readers at one point electric light is so harsh, and ugly and it shows the dirt, thereby inducing feelings of guilt. Stop voting. Stop working. Grow vegetables. Play an Instrument. Make Compost. Bake Bread. His list of injunctions become longer and more demanding as the book proceeds. The irony is that there is no way this champion idler would ever follow his own advice. Which is a shame, because there is some excellent advice in these pages, backed up with an erudite plethora of quotes from literary precursors from Thomas Aquinas through the Romantic Poets to EF Shumacher and the Yippies.

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