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Books

Make it a new year’s resolution to be less active

12 January 2019

9:00 AM

12 January 2019

9:00 AM

As a boy Josh Cohen was passive, dopey and given to daydreaming. Now a practising psychoanalyst and a professor of literature with several books to his name, he retains ‘a long and deep intimacy with lassitude and aimlessness’. Cohen believes the special affection reserved for pop culture’s fictional slackers, slobs and reverists — think Jeff Lebowski, Homer Simpson, Snoopy — suggests that humans are fundamentally inclined towards idleness: people are ‘as much given to saying no as to saying yes, as much to rest as to motion, as much to being as to doing’.

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