André Gorz and the concept of hygiene

From David Frayne’s The Refusal of Work pg 149-150:

As Bruce described his self-care habits, I was reminded of Gorz’s definition of ‘hygiene’, which for Gorz means something much more than the mundane rituals of preening and cleanliness. For Gorz hygiene consists in a more rigorous attempt on the part of individuals to understand their bodily needs and improve their well-being. Hygiene is likened to an ‘art of living’, and refers to the ‘comprehensive set of rules that people observe by themselves to maintain or recover their health’ (Gorz, 1980: 151, his emphasis). In Bruce’s case, self-care meant a number of things, from stretching and exercising, to prioritising nutrition, and taking some time each day to rest and contemplate. To somebody else, self-care could entail a completely different set of practices. Self-care does not necessarily mean developing a strict, medically sanctioned well-being regime, but might also recognise the importance of unstructured time to relax, live in the moment, see friends, be irresponsible, and even do things commonly considered to be unhealthy. The important thing is that each person is free to decide autonomously which habits, practices, situations and environments allow him or her to flourish – a process of self-discovery which requires a degree of freedom from pressing economic demands

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