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The Laziness MythNarratives of Work and the Good Life in South Africa$
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Christine Jeske

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9781501752506

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: May 2021

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9781501752506.001.0001

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“We want to live a good life”

“We want to live a good life”

(p.1) Introduction “We want to live a good life”
The Laziness Myth

Christine Jeske

Cornell University Press

This chapter introduces the book and talks about the ways people seek a good life, and how their various ways of seeking a good life do — or don't — intersect with work. It aims to help in understanding some of the global political and economic trends that make it rare for South African people to find the good life through a paid job, and how people go on finding the good life anyway. It explains that when good work is hard to find, politically polarized discourses of scapegoating abound. It then discusses how the different narratives people are inclined to believe shape their lives. Finally, the chapter talks about the danger of the hard-work narrative.

Keywords:   good life, global political trends, global economic trends, South Africa, hard work, South African people

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