We humans are herd animals and do whatever it happens to be that we’ve done before. Serfs in Russia before 1917 would have been shocked (and horrified) by the idea of a five-day working week, because their god was watching them and their role was to be good serfs, which meant working the land of their owner day in and day out lest they be punished with blows from the terrifying KHYT. Many Chinese laborers in paddy fields within living memory would have been very uncomfortable with the idea of taking even a single day off work lest they fall foul of the local apparatchik.

Meanwhile, a fair amount of modern research shows that the average person is more productive working a 4-day week than the standard 5-day week but of course no large company is going to pay any heed to this sort of pernicious nonsense.

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Anyone who enjoys my articles here on Medium may be interested in my books Why Democracy Failed and The Praying Ape, both available from Amazon.

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