Contemporary articles citing Bourdieu P (1984) Distinction

sociological, culture, context, empirical, cultural, conditions, understanding, studies, his, ways

Steinmetz, G. 2004. "Odious Comparisons: Incommensurability, the Case Study, and ``small N's'' in Sociology." Sociological Theory. 22:3 371-400. Link
Case studies and ``small-N comparisons'' have been attacked from two directions, positivist and incommensurabilist. At the same time, some authors have defended small-N comparisons as allowing qualitative researchers to attain a degree of scientificity, yet they also have rejected the case study as merely ``idiographic.'' Practitioners of the case study sometimes agree with these critics, disavowing all claims to scientificity. A related set of disagreements concerns the role and nature of social theory in sociology, which sometimes is described as useless and parasitic and other times as evolving in splendid isolation from empirical research. These three forms of sociological activity-comparative analysis, studies of individual cases, and social theory-are defended here from the standpoint of critical realism. In this article I first reconstruct, in very broad strokes, the dominant epistemological and ontological framework of postwar U.S. sociology. The next two sections discuss several positivist and incommensurabilist criticisms of comparison and case studies. The last two sections propose an understanding of comparison as operating along two dimensions, events and structures, and offer an illustration of the difference and relationship between the two.

Brint, S. 2001. "Gemeinschaft Revisited: a Critique and Reconstruction of the Community Concept." Sociological Theory. 19:1 1-23. Link
Community remains a potent symbol and aspiration in political and intellectual life. However, it has largely passed out of sociological analysis. The paper shows why this has occurred, and it develops a new typology that can make the concept useful again in sociology: The neu typology is based on identifying structurally distinct subtypes of community using a small number of partitioning variables. The first partition is defined by the ultimate context of interaction; the second by the primary motivation for interaction; the third by rates of interaction and location of members; and the fourth by the amount of face-to-face as opposed ro computer-mediated interaction. This small number of partitioning variables yields eight major subtypes of community. The paper shows how and why these major subtypes are related to important variations in the behavioral and organizational outcomes of community. The paper also seeks to resolve some disagreements between classical liberalism and communitarians. It shows that only a few of the major subtypes of community are likely to be as illiberal and intolerant as the selective imagery of classical liberals asserts, while at the same time only a few are prone to generate as much fraternalism and equity as the selective imagery of communitarians suggests. The paper concludes by discussing the forms of community that are best suited to the modern world.

Kane, AE. 1997. "Theorizing Meaning Construction in Social Movements: Symbolic Structures and Interpretation During the Irish Land War, 1879-1882." Sociological Theory. 15:3 249-276. Link
Though the process of meaning construction is widely recognized to be a crucial factor in the mobilization, unfolding, and outcomes of social movements, the conditions and mechanisms that allow meaning construction and cultural transformation are often misconceptualized and/or underanalyzed. Following a ``tool kit'' perspective on culture, dominant social movement theory locates meaning only as it is embodied in concrete social practices. Meaning construction from this perspective is a matter of manipulating static symbols and meaning to achieve goals. I argue instead that meaning is located in the structure of culture, and that the condition and mechanism of meaning construction and transformation are, respectively, the metaphoric nature of symbolic systems, and individual and collective interpretation of those systems in the face of concrete events. This theory is demonstrated by analyzing, through textual analysis, meaning construction during the Irish Land War 1879-1882, showing how diverse social groups constructed new and emergent symbolic meanings and how transformed collective understandings contributed to specific, yet unpredictable, political action and movement outcomes. The theoretical model and empirical case demonstrates that social movement analysis must examine the metaphoric logic of symbolic systems and the interpretive process by which people construct meaning in order to fully explain the role of culture in social movements, the agency of movement participants, and the contingency of the course and outcomes of social movements.

Lichterman, P. 1995. "Beyond the Seesaw Model: Public Commitment in a Culture of Self-fulfillment." Sociological Theory. 13:3 275-300. Link
Communitarian sociological theory and research of the past 30 years has often assumed that a growing culture of self-fulfillment, or `'personalism,'' is ultimately incompatible with commitment to the public good. This article argues that this `'seesaw model'' does not exhaust the possible relations between personalism and public commitment. It borrows insights from radical democratic theories to argue the existence of a form of public commitment that is enacted through, rather than impeded by, personalism. A cultural analysis that highlights everyday practices enables us to conceptualize this personalized form of public commitment, which goes unrecognized in communitarian accounts, and which gets discussed only in formal theoretical or social-psychological, terms in radical democratic theories. A case example of personalized public commitment in recent grass-roots environmentalism illustrates the limits in the seesaw model and speaks back to radical democratic theories of public commitment by illuminating how the individualized commitment they theorize may work in everyday cultural practice. I conclude with suggestions for further theoretical work on personalism.

SOMERS, MR. 1995. "Whats Political or Cultural About Political-culture and the Public Sphere - Toward an Historical Sociology of Concept-formation." Sociological Theory. 13:2 113-144. Link
The English translation of Habermas's The Structural Transformation of the Public Sphere converges with a recent trend toward the revival of the `'political culture concept'' in the social sciences. Surprisingly, Habermas's account of the Western bourgeois public sphere has much in common with the original political culture concept associated with Parsonian modernization theory in the 1950s and 1960s. In both cases, the concept of political culture is used in a way that is neither political nor cultural. Explaining this peculiarity is the central problem addressed in this article and one to follow I hypothesize that this is the case because the concept itself is embedded in an historically constituted political culture (here called a conceptual network)-a structured web of conceptual relationships that combine into Anglo-American citizenship theory. The method of an historical sociology of concept formation is introduced to analyze historically and empirically the internal constraints and dynamics of this conceptual network. The method draws from new work in cultural history and sociology, social studies, and network, narrative, and institutional analysis. This research yields three empirical findings: this conceptual network has a narrative structure, here called the Anglo-American citizenship story; this narrative is grafted onto an epistemology of social naturalism; and these elements combine in a metanarrative that continues to constrain empirical research in political sociology.

GOLDMAN, H. 1994. "From Social-theory to Sociology of Knowledge and Back - Karl Mannheim and the Sociology of Intellectual Knowledge Production." Sociological Theory. 12:3 266-278. Link
This paper proposes a reconsideration of Karl Mannheim and his work from the viewpoint of the needs of sociological theory. It points out certain affinities between Mannheim and some contemporary theorists, such as Gramsci and Foucault, and then reflects on certain problems in Mannheim's work, particularly the response to `'relativism'' and the hope of creating new `'syntheses'' through the sociology of knowledge. Finally, it proposes ways to draw on the sociology of intellectuals, inspired by Mannheim, in order to advance the understanding of social theory.

COHEN, IJ & MF ROGERS. 1994. "Autonomy and Credibility - Voice as Method." Sociological Theory. 12:3 304-318. Link
Although little noticed by practicing theorists, narrative voice influences theoretical work. This essay presents a demonstration of voice as method, concentrating on brief segments of works by Garfinkel and Goffman. We attend to two methodological themes: how theorists use voice to establish intellectual autonomy, and how the use of voice influences credibility with readers. Garfinkel maximizes his autonomy by using narrative techniques that isolate him from his readers, and produce little common context with them as a result. Goffman maintains a context for credibility with his readers by using a personal voice, but he uses this voice to request their indulgence as he follows his autonomous muse. Goffman's narrative self-indulgence prevents him from fashioning a coherent theoretical program for his readers, something Garfinkel's distant voice enables him to achieve.

FANTASIA, R. 1995. "Fast-food in France." Theory and Society. 24:2 201-243. Link

FINE, GA. 1995. "Wittgensteins Kitchen - Sharing Meaning in Restaurant Work." Theory and Society. 24:2 245-269. Link

Wasilewski, J & E WnukLipinski. 1995. "Poland: Winding Road From the Communist to the Post-solidarity Elite." Theory and Society. 24:5 669-696. Link

Szelenyi, S, I Szelenyi & I Kovach. 1995. "The Making of the Hungarian Postcommunist Elite: Circulation in Politics, Reproduction in the Economy." Theory and Society. 24:5 697-722. Link

Karabel, J. 1996. "Towards a Theory of Intellectuals and Politics." Theory and Society. 25:2 205-233. Link

Eyal, G. 1996. "The Discursive Origins of Israeli Separatism: the Case of the Arab Village." Theory and Society. 25:3 389-429. Link

Eyerman, R & S Barretta. 1996. "From the 30s to the 60s: the Folk Music Revival in the United States." Theory and Society. 25:4 501-543. Link

Eliasoph, N. 1997. "`'close to Home'': the Work of Avoiding Politics." Theory and Society. 26:5 605-647. Link

Benson, R. 1999. "Field Theory in Comparative Context: a New Paradigm for Media Studies." Theory and Society. 28:3 463-498. Link

Fine, GA. 2003. "Crafting Authenticity: the Validation of Identity in Self-taught Art." Theory and Society. 32:2 153-180. Link
The desire for authenticity now occupies a central position in contemporary culture. Whether in our search for selfhood, leisure experience, or in our material purchases, we search for the real, the genuine. These terms are not, however, descriptive, but must be situated and defined by audiences. In this analysis, I examine the development of the market for self-taught art, an artistic domain in which the authentic is a central defining feature, conferring value on objects and creators. Self-taught art is a form of identity art in which the characteristics of the artists and their life stories are as important as the formal features of the created objects. The article examines the justifications for this emphasis and the battles over the construction of biography. My examination of self-taught art is grounded in five years of ethnographic observation, interviews, and analyses of texts.

Leschziner, Vanina. 2006. "Epistemic Foundations of Cuisine: a Socio-cognitive Study of the Configuration of Cuisine in Historical Perspective." Theory and Society. 35:4 421-443. Link
This article is a study of the development of modern European cuisine through an examination of the socio-cognitive schemas which shape the way social actors think of and about food. While the historical phase that spans from the late middle ages to modernity has been widely studied (mainly by historians) I advance a new interpretation which focuses on the influence of cognitive patterns on the structure of cuisine - the ways of eating, cooking and serving food. I argue that the shift in the mode of classification helps explain the origin of the modern configuration of cuisine built on the polarity between the sweet and savory tastes. Using the case of cuisine, I propose to see the cultural schemas which define thinking in a socio-historical context as providing the conditions of possibility for transformations in a cultural sphere to occur. This article thus attempts to contribute to our understanding of the relation between cultural practices and cognitive schemas.

Emirbayer, Mustafa & Victoria Johnson. 2008. "Bourdieu and Organizational Analysis." Theory and Society. 37:1 1-44. Link
Despite some promising steps in the right direction, organizational analysis has yet to exploit fully the theoretical and empirical possibilities inherent in the writings of Pierre Bourdieu. While certain concepts associated with his thought, such as field and capital, are already widely known in the organizational literature, the specific ways in which these terms are being used provide ample evidence that the full significance of his relational mode of thought has yet to be sufficiently apprehended. Moreover, the almost complete inattention to habitus, the third of Bourdieu's major concepts, without which the concepts of field and capital (at least as he deployed them) make no sense, further attests to the misappropriation of his ideas and to the lack of appreciation of their potential usefulness. It is our aim in this paper, by contrast, to set forth a more informed and comprehensive account of what a relational - and, in particular, a Bourdieu-inspired - agenda for organizational research might look like. Accordingly, we examine the implications of his theoretical framework for interorganizational relations, as well as for organizations themselves analyzed as fields. The primary advantage of such an approach, we argue, is the central place accorded therein to the social conditions under which inter- and intraorganizational power relations are produced, reproduced, and contested.