How The Soviet Union Tried to Abolish Weekends

About a hundred years ago in August 1929, the Soviet Union moved to alter the most fundamental tool of daily functioning: the calendar. An industrial revolution had already set the stage for radical reforms in labour, each of which were fuelled by the need for faster economic growth and infrastructural development. Stalin’s government was pushing its proletariat to achieve new and steadier goals with a renewed vigour. Flowing in this momentum of socialist progress, a Bolshevik economist, Yuri Larin, proposed what would be called nepreryvka or the ‘continuous work week’. It did away with the universal recognition of Sunday as the rest day and instead enforced a five-day week with a strange system of offs.

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Soviet factory workers in the 1920s. Photo: Archive Z/Flickr


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