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    Theories relating to boredom leisure

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    What is the theoretical background conceptualizing leisure boredom and its related satisfaction?

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    Boredom is often linked to leisure and maladaptive habits such as substance abuse, smoking or leisure gambling (Wright and Moore, 1982; Wolfgang, 1988; Smith and Caldwell, 1989). The term leisure is derived from the Latin word licere, meaning being free (Edginton et al, 1998). It can be conceptualized as a state of being separate from work and school (Dare et al, 1987), and is not only thought of as being the opportunity for relaxation, but also for complexity, excitement and novelty. (Edginton et al, 1998). Feeling bored in leisure time, or leisure boredom has received increasing attention in the field of psychosocial research because it was suggested that satisfaction in leisure time, rather at work, was more profoundly linked to quality of life (London et al, 1977; Environics, 1989; Day and Alon, 1993).

    Boredom has been studied for a long time. A very early conceptualization of boredom emerged from psychoanalysis. It conceptualizes boredom as a "gradually increasing feeling of paralysis... which is felt as unpleasant through the feeling of emptiness,... an affective reaction to a remaining unsatisfied and steadily increasing striving, dominant in the psyche but moderated from within" (Luypen,1953, p.172). Later on, more testable theories of boredom emerged (Csilszentmihalyi, 1975, O'Hanlon, 1981). The Optimal Arousal perspective (Iso-Ahola, 1980) and the theory of Intrinsic Motivation (Deci and Ryan, 1986) are among prevailing theories that have been used to conceptualize boredom and its relationship to leisure and related satisfaction.

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