Social Capitalism and Leisure Policy Reconsidered

Authored by: Tony Blackshaw

Routledge Handbook of Leisure Studies

Print publication date:  April  2013
Online publication date:  July  2013

Print ISBN: 9780415697170
eBook ISBN: 9780203140505
Adobe ISBN: 9781136495595


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In a journal article, ‘What’s the Big Idea? A Critical Exploration of the Concept of Social Capital and Its Incorporation into Leisure Policy Discourse’, published in Leisure Studies in 2005, Blackshaw and Long identified the triumphant march of social capitalism into social policy circles and critically discussed its relative merits for examining and understanding the role for leisure in policy strategies. The argument underpinning their analysis was that at the cusp of the new millennium the idea had taken hold in political circles in the UK that we needed an alternative way of dealing with social inequality that didn’t involve the state 1 taxing those in work and then blowing the proceeds on undeserving recipients. A new consensus seemed to have emerged which was now inclined to believe that social inequality is no longer so much material (lack of money) as virtual (lack of opportunities).

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