Amateurs, Professionals, and Serious Leisure by Robert A. Stebbins

By Robert A. Stebbins

For fifteen years, Robert Stebbins has carried out large examine on amateurs and execs in theatre, tune, archaeology, astronomy, baseball, soccer, magic and stand-up comedy. His guides provide the subject of great rest in-depth scholarly realization. this article brings jointly the findings of this learn venture to supply a theoretical framework that finds the commonalities throughout those 8 fields. all through this undertaking Stebbins has outfitted at the paintings of Barney Glaser and Anselm Strauss and their inspiration of "grounded theory". First, Stebbins widely saw the regimen actions of amateurs and execs in each one box studied. Then, as he turned extra accustomed to the life-styles of the contributors, he performed long, unstructured, face-to-face interviews with, more often than not, 30 beginner or specialist respondents. each one box demanded certain equipment of commentary, research, interviewing, probing and reporting. up to attainable, even though, Stebbins requested comparable questions of all respondents in all fields so that it will let generalizations throughout those assorted fields. the outcome used to be a "substantive grounded conception" of every box studied. Stebbins has constructed a "formal grounded thought" of amateurs and execs in response to the learn amassed in all 8 important fields. via transcending quite a few contexts, he argues, you will achieve a extra enduring appreciation of the weather that impact peoples' stories in paintings and hobbies. A assessment of the findings throughout this wide variety of actions, together with his findings and concepts on hobbyists and profession volunteers, enabled Stebbins to derive larger definitions of the most ideas of the venture, resembling "amateur", "the public", and "serious rest" -- in addition to "professional", the place he distinguishes among client-centred and public-centred pros who, whereas sharing quite a few ideal-typical attributes, range as to the ability and keep watch over they've got over their paintings in a democratic society. He offers inductive conclusions approximately careers and the prices and rewards within the 8 amateur-professional fields thought of. He examines the exterior international of amateurs and execs within the gentle of such concerns as kin ties, family members between amateurs and pros and between amateurs and their employers, public photographs, critics and newshounds, group contributions, and the query of marginality for amateurs who're stuck among the paintings international of the pro and the informal rest global of the vast majority of the inhabitants. He concludes with an exploration of the longer term position of great rest when it comes to predictions of better unemployment and elevated relaxation time and toughness.

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Although they gain durable personal benefits from their endeavours, helping remains an important aim. When amateurs and hobbyists persevere at the difficult requirements of their leisure, they do so because they are devoted and because hard work engenders feelings of accomplishment. When volunteers persevere, however, they do so with the conviction that they are needed; to weaken in the face of adversity is to let down others, disappoint them, or leave serious personal or social problems unresolved.

The publics, on the other hand, want some sort of positive stimulation of an artistic, intellectual, or pleasurable sort, a stimulation enhanced by the acquisition of knowledge concerning the cultural tradition of the profession in question. 5 Professionals use institutionalized means of formally or consensually validating the adequacy of training and trained individuals. In the clientcentred professions, this attribute refers to licences and examinations, which authenticate professional status.

Still to be studied ethnographically are such sports and games as darts, volleyball, orienteering, rowing, and computer games. What the hobbyists in this category have in common is the lack of a true professional counterpart. Consistent with the definition of a "hobbyist," their participation is continual and systematic. The aim is to acquire and maintain the knowledge and skills enabling 14 Amateurs, Professionals, and Serious Leisure the individual to experience uncommon rewards from the endeavour.

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