Brill’s Encyclopedia of China

Get access

(673 words)

The invention of leisure and with it the concept of leisure time in China took place during the late 19th century. It was established culturally by being set off against another innovation, "work time."

Leisure as a time free from urgent and purposeful work has been a core ingredient of a traditional cultivated life-style; it could be filled by a wide range of activities. Although all classes had their particular leisure activities, the notion is mostly associated with the life-style of the educated and wealthy classes. The new …

Cite this page
Yeh, Catherine V., “Leisure”, in: Brill’s Encyclopedia of China, Managing Editor English Edition: Daniel Leese. Consulted online on 28 March 2023 <>
First published online: 2008
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004168633, 20121018

▲   Back to top   ▲