How did the two-day work week start and spread?


How did the two-day work week start and spread?

By Dawid Zawiła

Many parts of the world have adopted a "full two-day work week", with Saturday and Sunday as holidays. On the other hand, in recent years, some companies have adopted the “3 days a week, 4 days a week work system”, and discussions on life-work balance have become active. However, it took a long time for two days a week to take hold,Portsmouth UniversityProfessor Brad Beven, who teaches the history of socio-cultural history in the United States, points out.

History of the two-day weekend offers lessons for today's calls for a four-day week

Prof. Beven explained that "Saturday and Sunday as holidays" is a relatively modern phenomenon, and its origin was in England in the 19th century. 1817, a businessman and revolutionaryRobert OwenAdvocated "8 hours for work, 8 hours for rest, and 8 hours for what I wanted to do," and opposed the UK's average working hours of 10 to 16 hours at the time. After such a movement, the British government in 1833Factory lawIs established. The law bans child labor under the age of 9, restricts working hours between the ages of 9 and 18 to no more than 69 hours per week, but holidays are religious.SabbathSunday only. At that time, working six days a week was common.

by Damien Walmsley

However, a combination of factors is changing the way people work in England. According to Professor Beven, the idea was "Holy Monday". Experts at the time had the quota of "finish the product by the weekend", and the delivery date was often set every Saturday. The skilled worker worked late Saturday night and occasionally worked overtime on Sunday, thus becoming the "Monday rest" work style. This is the origin of “Holy Monday”. This work style has become increasingly popular, with commercial facilities such as music venues and theaters holding events on Monday.

Religious groups and trade unions, on the other hand, were also eager to "increase holidays." According to Professor Beven, religious groups have claimed that the working class would "improve mentally and morally" if Saturday is a holiday. One union insisted on increasing holidays for the benefit of workers. Even today, the public and commercial services union in the United Kingdom, which has 200,000 people, mentions "increased holidays" as one of the union's brilliant achievements.

In 1842,Early weekend unionThe union will lobby and officially work on a "Saturday afternoon" holiday instead of the holy Monday that was common among workers. The early weekend union's success in setting up branches in a number of towns to attract members and insisting on the ability to cultivate hard-working workers was paying off, and some employers are now accepting a Saturday afternoon holiday. Was.

In response to the early weekend union movement, other unions and prohibition groups also joined the movement, seeing it as an opportunity to change the impression of workers. At that time, drunk workers andCockfightingBecause savage sports such as were common on Monday, factory workers had a low social status. Under these circumstances, trade unions and prohibition groups recommended that Saturday afternoon breaks be used for "reasonable recreation."

By Bonnie Kittle

The leisure industry, which was growing rapidly throughout the UK, saw Saturday afternoon breaks as a business opportunity, and each company launched a campaign. Discount tickets for those who return home from Saturday afternoon also appear. The most influential of these campaigns was the decision to host a soccer game on Saturday afternoon, says Dr. Beven. The decision was made in the 1890s and further promoted the leisure industry.

It was up to the factory to decide whether or not to allow a Saturday afternoon holiday, so it took time to "permeate the public." Professor Beven said that the weekend holiday movement began in the 1840s, but employers, religious groups, the leisure industry, and workers began to consider Saturday afternoon breaks as common. He pointed out the end of the 19th century 50 years later. And this Saturday was a whole holiday in the 1930s, Professor Beven explained that it was found that taking a holiday on Saturday and Sunday reduced worker absenteeism and increased efficiency. .

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