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In Beyond 9 to 5, Sarah Norgate investigates the psychological, social, and cultural influences that affect the way we regard and are affected by time. Using everyday examples from around the world, her intriguing analysis unravels both the mental and biological mysteries of our relationships with time and provides a clear understanding of the links among behavior, brain, and genes. Norgate begins by musing on the origins of our obsession with punctuality; the conflicting practices of rushing and taking things slow; ecomy-driven proverbs from highly industrialized nations-Don't put off until tomorrow what you can do today-and how they differ from beliefs and attitudes in more rural areas; why some countries like Japan promote a 24/7 lifestyle while others still have trouble allowing businesses to open on Sunday; and which city moves at a faster pace, New York or Dublin? Norgate's examination of global trends yields surprising results. Norgate then considers the biological effects of irregular hours, night shifts, cram sessions, round-the-clock consumption, and other potentially unhealthy characteristics of modern living. In addition, she looks at how our relationship with time evolves throughout our lives, from birth to old age, tracing the connection between longevity and memory and how such conditions as Parkinson's disease, addiction, sensory impairment, and autism change our perception of time. Norgate concludes by uniting these threads to better understand the universality of our temporal landscapes. An engaging mix of cultural reference and research, Beyond 9 to 5 is a compelling look at what makes us human.
Sarah Norgate is a lecturer in psychology at the University of Salford, U.K. In 2004 she was awarded a Winston Churchill Fellowship to study the psychosocial practices used in the care of children with eye cancer in Los Angeles, Toronto, and Paris.