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The arrival of time politics

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For several decades it has been apparent that the old ways of managing time are fast disappearing. Fixed jobs, shared rhythms of shopping and leisure, marriage, work and retirement — all are on the way out, albeit slowly. Public policy, after lagging behind social change, has started to catch up with new rights to work flexibly that have captured the public imagination far more than anyone expected, rights to parental leave, and support for childcare that is for many the prerequisite for more flexible working. The advent of 24-hour health advice from NHS Direct, postal voting, online tax returns and of ministers who resign to spend time with their family and actually mean it, are all symptoms of this shift.

Keywords: arrival; politics; time

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: September 9, 2005

More about this publication?
  • About Time: Speed, Society, People and the Environment
    Where does all the time go? Despite the burgeoning army of machines designed to save time - from cars and aeroplanes to dishwashers and microwaves - we don't seem to have any more of it on our hands. We simply fill the space we clear with more things to do - consuming more, spending more - and then look around for new ways of saving time. Being busy has become a habit - a habit that gives us high status - busy people are important people. About Time, edited by the think-tank Forum for the Future, brings together ten of the world's leading thinkers and writers, including Will Hutton, Baroness Mary Warnock, Sir Martin Rees, Ghillean Prance, Jay Griffiths (the author of the bestselling Pip Pip) and Jonathon Porritt in a collection of intriguing essays exploring the issue of time and how it relates to the environment, economy and society.
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