Writing leisure: Values and ideologies of research

William P. Stewart, Diana C. Parry, Troy D. Glover

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Writing leisure constructs a normative reality about ways in which life should be lived. Leisure research, like all discourses, is embedded in values and situated in ideological contexts. This paper contributes to an on-going dialogue concerned with the impact of ideology on leisure research. The tendencies for discourses of leisure are to provide: (1) idealized visions for end states of society, and (2) roles for research that move society doser to the idealized vision. This paper identifies values and ideologies in writing leisure across topical areas of health, recreation policy, and outdoor recreation where significant portions of the research discourse privilege medicalization, neoliberalism, and pristine land, respectively. Although it may seem that research simply documents the facts about leisure, the writing of leisure does not escape ideological contexts. To enhance the intended impact of leisure research, its values and ideologies need to come to the surface. There are numerous strategies to increase the capacity of leisure research to account for its value orientations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)360-384
Number of pages25
JournalJournal of Leisure Research
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2008


  • Hegemony
  • Ideology
  • Research culture

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Science (miscellaneous)
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Tourism, Leisure and Hospitality Management


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