HOME

TheInfoList




An amateur (; ; ) is generally considered a person who pursues a particular activity or field of study independently from their source of income. Amateurs and their pursuits are also described as popular, informal,
self-taught Autodidacticism (also autodidactism) or self-education (also self-learning and self-teaching) is education Education is the process of facilitating learning, or the acquisition of knowledge, skills, value (ethics), values, morals, b ...
,
user-generated User-generated content (UGC), alternatively known as user-created content (UCC), is any form of content, such as images, videos, text, and audio, that has been posted by users User may refer to: Ancient Egyptian roles * User (ancient Egyptian o ...
,
DIY "Do it yourself" ("DIY") is the method of building, modifying, or repair The technical meaning of maintenance involves functional checks, servicing, repairing or replacing of necessary devices, equipment, machinery, building infrastructu ...
, and
hobby A hobby is considered to be a regular activity that is done for enjoyment, typically during one's leisure time Leisure has often been defined as a quality of experience or as free time. Free time is time Time is the indefinite ...

hobby
ist.


History

Historically, the amateur was considered to be the ideal balance between pure intent, open mind, and the interest or passion for a subject. That ideology spanned many different fields of interest. It may have its roots in the
ancient Greek philosophy Ancient Greek philosophy arose in the 6th century BC, marking the end of the Greek Dark Ages The Greek Dark Ages is the period of Greek history from the end of the Mycenaean palatial civilization around 1100 BC to the beginning of Archa ...
of amateur athletes competing in the
Olympics The modern Olympic Games or Olympics (french: Jeux olympiques) are leading international sporting events featuring summer and winter sports competitions in which thousands of athletes An athlete (also sportsman or sportswoman) is a pers ...
. The ancient Greek citizens spent most of their time in other pursuits, but competed according to their natural talents and abilities. The "gentleman amateur" was a phenomenon among the
gentry Gentry (from Old French Old French (, , ; Modern French French ( or ) is a Romance language of the Indo-European family. It descended from the Vulgar Latin of the Roman Empire, as did all Romance languages. French evolved from Ga ...
of
Great Britain Great Britain is an island in the North Atlantic Ocean off the northwest coast of continental Europe. With an area of , it is the largest of the British Isles, the List of European islands by area, largest European island, and the List of i ...

Great Britain
from the 17th century until the 20th century. With the start of the Age of Reason, with people thinking more about how the world works around them, (see
Science in the Age of Enlightenment The history of science during the Age of Enlightenment traces developments in science Science (from the Latin word ''scientia'', meaning "knowledge") is a systematic enterprise that Scientific method, builds and Taxonomy (general), organizes ...
), things like the
Cabinet of Curiosities Cabinets of curiosities (also known in German German(s) may refer to: Common uses * of or related to Germany * Germans, Germanic ethnic group, citizens of Germany or people of German ancestry * For citizens of Germany, see also German natio ...
, and the writing of the book ''
The Christian Virtuoso ''The Christian Virtuoso'' (1690) was one of the last books published by Robert Boyle Robert Boyle (; 25 January 1627 – 31 December 1691) was an Anglo-Irish natural philosopher, chemist, physicist, and inventor. Boyle is largely rega ...
'', started to shape the idea of the gentleman amateur. He was vastly interested in a particular topic, and studied, observed, and collected things and information on his topic of choice. The
Royal Society The Royal Society, formally The Royal Society of London for Improving Natural Knowledge, is a learned society and the United Kingdom's national academy of sciences. Founded on 28 November 1660, it was granted a royal charter by Charles II of ...
in Great Britain was generally composed of these "gentleman amateurs", and is one the reasons science today exists the way it does. A few examples of these gentleman amateurs are
Francis Bacon Francis Bacon, 1st Viscount St Alban, (; 22 January 1561 – 9 April 1626), also known as Lord Verulam, was an English philosopher and statesman who served as Attorney General for England and Wales, Attorney General and as Lord Chancellor of K ...

Francis Bacon
,
Isaac Newton Sir Isaac Newton (25 December 1642 – 20 March 1726/27) was an English mathematician A mathematician is someone who uses an extensive knowledge of mathematics Mathematics (from Greek: ) includes the study of such topics a ...

Isaac Newton
, and
Sir Robert Cotton, 1st Baronet, of Connington Sir Robert Bruce Cotton, 1st Baronet (22 January 1570/1 – 6 May 1631) of Conington Hall in the parish of Conington in Huntingdonshire Huntingdonshire (; abbreviated Hunts) is a non-metropolitan district of Cambridgeshire and a historic coun ...
. Amateurism can be seen in both a negative and positive light. Since amateurs often lack formal training, some amateur work may be considered sub-par. For example, amateur athletes in sports such as
basketball Basketball is a team sport in which two teams, most commonly of five players each, opposing one another on a rectangular court A court is any person or institution, often as a government institution, with the authority to Adjudication, ...

basketball
,
baseball Baseball is a bat-and-ball games, bat-and-ball game played between two opposing teams who take turns batting (baseball), batting and fielding. The game proceeds when a player on the fielding team (baseball), fielding team, called the pi ...

baseball
, or
football Football is a family of team sport A team is a
dilettante Dilettante_or_dilettantes_may_refer_to: *_An_amateur An_amateur_(;_;_)_is_generally_considered_a_person_who_pursues_an_avocation_independent_from_their_source_of_income._Amateurs_and_their_pursuits_are_also_described_as_popular,_informal,_autodid_...
.


__Amateur_athletics_

The_line_between_''amateur''_and_''professional''_has_always_been_blurred_in_athletics_with_the_central_idea_being_that_amateurs_should_not_receive_material_reward_for_taking_part_in_sports._The_lack_of_financial_benefit_can_be_seen_as_a_sign_of_Personal_commitment.html" ;"title="wiktionary:dilettante.html" "title="roup (disambiguation), group of individuals (human or non-human) working together to achieve their goal. As defined by Professor Leigh Thompson (academic), Leigh Thompson of the Kellogg Sch ...
are regarded as possessing a lower level of ability than professional athletes. On the other hand, an amateur may be in a position to approach a subject with an open mind (as a result of the lack of formal training) and in a financially disinterested manner. An amateur who dabbles in a field out of interest rather than as a profession, or possesses a general but superficial interest in any art or a branch of knowledge, is often referred to as a wiktionary:dilettante">dilettante Dilettante or dilettantes may refer to: * An amateur An amateur (; ; ) is generally considered a person who pursues an avocation independent from their source of income. Amateurs and their pursuits are also described as popular, informal, autodid ...
.


Amateur athletics

The line between ''amateur'' and ''professional'' has always been blurred in athletics with the central idea being that amateurs should not receive material reward for taking part in sports. The lack of financial benefit can be seen as a sign of Personal commitment">commitment to a sport; until the 1970s the Olympic rules required that competitors be amateurs. Receiving payment to participate in an event disqualified an athlete from that event, as in the case of Jim Thorpe (he got payment in a different sport, but was banned in all Olympic sports). The only Olympic events that still require participants to be amateurs are boxing, wrestling and figure skating but amateurism in these cases is defined in terms of rules, mainly participation in "professional events", rather than whether the athlete receives any money for his sport.


Contribution of amateurs

Many amateurs make valuable contributions in the field of
computer programming Computer programming is the process of designing and building an executable computer program to accomplish a specific computing result or to perform a particular task. Programming involves tasks such as analysis, generating algorithms, Profilin ...
through the
open source Open source is source code that is made freely available for possible modification and redistribution. Products include permission to use the source code, design documents, or content of the product. The open-source model is a decentralized model ...
movement.
Amateur dramatics An amateur (; ; ) is generally considered a person who pursues a particular activity or field of study independently from their source of income. Amateurs and their pursuits are also described as popular, informal, self-taught Autodidacticism ( ...
is the performance of
plays Play most commonly refers to: * Play (activity), an activity done for enjoyment * Play (theatre), a work of drama Play may refer also to: Computers and technology * Google Play, a digital content service * Play Framework, a Java framework * Play ...
or
musical theater Musical theatre is a form of theatre, theatrical performance that combines songs, spoken dialogue, acting and dance. The story and emotional content of a musical – humor, pathos, love, anger – are communicated through words, music, ...
, often to high standards, but lacking the budgets of professional
West End West End most commonly refers to: * West End of London, an area of central London, England * West End theatre, a popular term for mainstream professional theatre staged in the large theatres of London, England West End may also refer to: Place ...
or
Broadway Broadway may refer to: Theatre * Broadway Theatre (disambiguation) * Broadway theatre, theatrical productions in professional theatres near Broadway, Manhattan, New York City, U.S. ** Broadway (Manhattan), the street **Broadway Theatre (53rd Str ...
performances.
Astronomy Astronomy (from el, ἀστρονομία, literally meaning the science that studies the laws of the stars) is a natural science that studies astronomical object, celestial objects and celestial event, phenomena. It uses mathematics, phys ...
, chemistry, history, linguistics, and the natural sciences are among the fields that have benefited from the activities of amateurs.
Charles Darwin Charles Robert Darwin (; ; 12 February 1809 – 19 April 1882) was an English natural history#Before 1900, naturalist, geologist and biologist, best known for his contributions to the science of evolution. His proposition that all sp ...

Charles Darwin
and
Gregor Mendel Gregor Johann Mendel (; cs, Řehoř Jan Mendel; 20 July 1822 – 6 January 1884) was a meteorologist, mathematician, biologist, AugustinianAugustinian may refer to: *Augustinians Augustinians are members of Christian religious orders tha ...

Gregor Mendel
were amateur scientists who never held a position in their field of study.
Leonardo da Vinci Leonardo di ser Piero da Vinci (15 April 14522 May 1519) was an Italian of the who was active as a painter, , engineer, scientist, theorist, sculptor and architect. While his fame initially rested on his achievements as a painter, he als ...

Leonardo da Vinci
was considered an amateur artist and autodidact in his field of study. Radio astronomy was founded by
Grote Reber Grote Reber (December 22, 1911 – December 20, 2002) was an American pioneer of , which combined his interests in and . He was instrumental in investigating and extending 's pioneering work, and conducted the first in the radio frequencies. H ...

Grote Reber
, an
amateur radio operator An amateur radio operator is someone who uses equipment at an amateur radio station to engage in two-way personal communications with other amateur operators on radio frequencies assigned to the amateur radio service. Amateur radio operators h ...
. Radio itself was greatly advanced by
Guglielmo Marconi Guglielmo Giovanni Maria Marconi, 1st Marquis of Marconi (; 25 April 187420 July 1937) was an inventor and , known for his creation of a practical -based system. This led to Marconi being credited as the , and he shared the 1909 with "in ...

Guglielmo Marconi
, a young Italian gentleman who started out by tinkering with a
coherer. The coherer was a primitive form of radio signal Detector (radio), detector used in the first radio receivers during the wireless telegraphy era at the beginning of the 20th century. Its use in radio was based on the 1890 findings of French physi ...

coherer
and a spark coil as an amateur electrician.
Pierre de Fermat Pierre de Fermat (; between 31 October and 6 December 1607 – 12 January 1665) was a French French (french: français(e), link=no) may refer to: * Something of, from, or related to France France (), officially the French Republic (fren ...

Pierre de Fermat
was a highly influential mathematician whose primary vocation was law. In the 2000s and 2010s, the distinction between amateur and professional has become increasingly blurred, especially in areas such as computer programming, music and astronomy. The term amateur professionalism, or pro-am, is used to describe these activities.


List of amateur pursuits

*
Amateur astronomy Image:Astronomy Amateur 3 V2.jpg, 250px, Amateur astronomers watch the night sky during the Perseids, Perseid meteor shower. Amateur astronomy is a hobby where participants enjoy observing or imaging celestial objects in the sky using the Naked e ...
, including a list of notable amateur astronomers * Amateur chemistry, including a list of notable amateur chemists *
Amateur film Amateur film is the low-budget hobbyist A hobby is considered to be a regular activity that is done for enjoyment, typically during one's leisure time Leisure has often been defined as a quality of experience or as free time. Free ...
*
Amateur geology from Afghanistan, which was named in honor of George Frederick Kunz Amateur geology or rock collecting (also referred to as rockhounding in the United States and Canada) is the non-professional study and hobby of collecting rocks and minerals or Fo ...
or rockhounding, including a list of notable amateur geologists *
Amateur journalismAmateur journalism is a hobby for starting small newspapers established after the U.S. Civil War, using small and inexpensive printing presses. Local circulation and exchanges, sometimes among associations were done. Conventions were also held. The h ...
*
Amateur radio Amateur radio, also known as ham radio, is the use of radio frequency Radio frequency (RF) is the oscillation Oscillation is the repetitive variation, typically in time, of some measure about a central value (often a point of equilibri ...
*
Amateur sports Amateur sports are sports in which participants engage largely or entirely without remuneration. The distinction is made between amateur sporting participants and professional sports, professional sporting participants, who are paid for the time ...
*
Amateur theatre Amateur theatre, also known as amateur dramatics, is theatre Theatre or theater is a collaborative form of performing art that uses live performers, usually actors or actresses, to present the experience of a real or imagined event before a l ...
*
Amateur pornography Amateur pornography is a category of pornography Pornography (often shortened to porn) is the portrayal of Human sexual activity, sexual subject matter for the exclusive purpose of sexual arousal.
Amateur pornography
*
Arts and crafts A handicraft, sometimes more precisely expressed as artisanal handicraft or handmade, is any of a wide variety of types of work where useful and decorative objects are made completely by one’s hand or by using only simple, non-automated rela ...

Arts and crafts
or handicraft, including a list of handicrafts carried out by amateurs *
Independent scholar Independent or Independents may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Artist groups * Independents (artist group)The Independents were a group of Modern Art, modernist painting, painters based in the New Hope, Pennsylvania, New Hope, Pennsylvan ...
*
Independent scientist An independent scientist (historically also known as gentleman scientist) is a financially independent scientist A scientist is a person who conducts Scientific method, scientific research to advance knowledge in an Branches of science, area o ...
or gentleman scientist, including a list of notable amateur scientists


See also

*
Professional A professional is a member of a profession or any person who earns a living from a specified professional activity. The term also describes the standards of education and training that prepare members of the profession with the particular knowled ...
*
Semi-professional Semi-professional sports are sport Sport pertains to any form of competitive Competition is a rivalry A rivalry is the state of two people or groups engaging in a lasting competitive relationship. Rivalry is the "against each other ...
* Amateurism in the NCAA * Amateur professionalism *
Hobby A hobby is considered to be a regular activity that is done for enjoyment, typically during one's leisure time Leisure has often been defined as a quality of experience or as free time. Free time is time Time is the indefinite ...

Hobby
* List of amateur chess players * List of amateur mathematicians * List of amateur wrestlers *
Volunteering Volunteering is a voluntary act of an individual or group freely giving time and labour for community service. Many volunteers are specifically trained in the areas they work, such as medicine, education, or emergency rescue. Others serve on ...

Volunteering


References


Further reading

* * * * * * {{Authority control * Occupations