Contemporary articles citing Bourdieu P (1988) Homo Acad
bourdieu's, bourdieu, pierre, factors, his, habitus, power, action, account, ideas
- Atkinson, Will. 2010. "Phenomenological Additions to the Bourdieusian Toolbox: Two Problems for Bourdieu, Two Solutions From Schutz." Sociological Theory. 28:1 1-19.
- In constructing his renowned theory of practice, Pierre Bourdieu claimed to have integrated the key insights from phenomenology and successfully melded them with objectivist analysis. The contention here, however, is that while his vision of the social world may indeed be generally laudable, he did not take enough from phenomenology. More specifically, there are two concepts in Alfred Schutz's body of work, which, if properly defined, disentangled from phenomenology, and appropriated, allow two frequently forwarded criticisms of Bourdieu's perspective to be overcome: on the one hand, a particular interpretation of the concept of lifeworld can remedy identified weaknesses on the problem of individuation; while on the other hand, Schutz's notion of the stock of knowledge can rectify Bourdieu's overly nonconscious depiction of agency. Given my overall support for Bourdieu's scheme and the fact that the extant criticisms on these two grounds are often excessive and obfuscatory, both the suggested elaborations will be prefaced by a clarificatory partial defense of his position.
- Collet, Francois. 2009. "Does Habitus Matter?: a Comparative Review of Bourdieu's Habitus and Simon's Bounded Rationality With Some Implications for Economic Sociology." Sociological Theory. 27:4 419-434.
- In this article, I revisit Pierre Bourdieu's concept of habitus and contrast it with Herbert Simon's notion of bounded rationality. Through a discussion of the literature of economic sociology on status and Fligstein's political-cultural approach, I argue that this concept can be a source of fresh insights into empirical problems. I find that the greater the change in the social environment, the more salient the benefits of using habitus as a tool to analyze agents' behavior.
- Elder-Vass, Dave. 2007. "Reconciling Archer and Bourdieu in an Emergentist Theory of Action." Sociological Theory. 25:4 325-346.
- Margaret Archer and Pierre Bourdieu have advanced what seem at first sight to be incompatible theories of human agency. While Archer places heavy stress on conscious reflexive deliberation and the consequent choices of identity and projects that individuals make, Bourdieu's concept of habitus places equally heavy stress on the role of social conditioning in determining our behavior, and downplays the contribution of conscious deliberation. Despite this, I argue that these two approaches, with some modification, can be reconciled in a single emergentist theory of human action that is sketched out in this article. It examines how human dispositions and our reflexive decisions are related to the determination of human action, linking dispositions and decisions to their neural base in human physiology and to the social factors that influence them. As a result, it argues, we can see human action as the outcome of a continuous interaction between dispositions and reflexivity. The article goes on to relate this explanation back to Bourdieu's concept of the habitus and Archer's account of reflexivity. It argues that the weaknesses in Bourdieu's theory of action can be resolved by a reasonable reinterpretation of the habitus that makes it consistent with the emergentist theory and creates space for human choices as well as social influences on our behavior. This opens up a role for the sort of reflexive deliberations advocated by Archer and thus to a reconciliation of the key contributions of both Archer and Bourdieu.
- Abend, G. 2006. "Styles of Sociological Thought: Sociologies, Epistemologies, and the Mexican and Us Quests for Truth." Sociological Theory. 24:1 1-41.
- Both U.S. and Mexican sociologies allege that they are in the business of making true scientific knowledge claims about the social world. Conventional conceptions of science notwithstanding, I demonstrate that their claims to truth and scientificity are based on alternative epistemological grounds. Drawing a random sample of nonquantitative articles from four leading journals, I show that, first, they assign a different role to theories, and indeed they have dissimilar understandings of what a theory should consist of. Second, whereas U.S. sociology actively struggles against subjectivity, Mexican sociology maximizes the potentials of subjective viewpoints. Third, U.S. sociologists tend to regard highly and Mexican sociologists to eagerly disregard the principle of ethical neutrality. These consistent and systematic differences raise two theoretical issues. First, I argue that Mexican and U.S. sociologies are epistemologically, semantically, and perceptually incommensurable. I contend that this problem is crucial for sociology's interest in the social conditioning of scientific knowledge's content. Second, I suggest four lines of thought that can help us explain the epistemological differences I find. Finally, I argue that sociologists would greatly profit from studying epistemologies in the same fashion they have studied other kinds of scientific and nonscientific beliefs.
- Hallett, T. 2003. "Symbolic Power and Organizational Culture." Sociological Theory. 21:2 128-149.
- With the recent wave of corporate scandals, organizational culture has regained relevance in politics and the media, However, to acquire enduring utility, the concept needs an overhaul to overcome the weaknesses of earlier approaches. As such, this paper reconceptualizes organizational culture as a negotiated order (Strauss 1978) that emerges through interactions between participants, an order influenced by those with the symbolic power to define the situation. I stress the complementary contributions of theorists of,practice (Bourdieu and Swidler) and theorists of interaction (Goffman and Strauss), building upward from practice into interaction, symbolic power, and the negotiated order. Using data from initial reports on the fall of Arthur Andersen and Co., I compare this symbolic power approach to other approaches (culture as subjective beliefs and values or as context/public meaning). The symbolic power model has five virtues: an empirically observable object of study; the capacity to explain conflict and integration; the ability to explain stability and change; causal efficacy; and links between the micro-, meso-, and macrolevels of analysis. Though this paper focuses on organizational culture, the symbolic power model provides theoretical leverage for understanding many situated contexts.
- Gartman, D. 2002. "Bourdieu's Theory of Cultural Change: Explication, Application, Critique." Sociological Theory. 20:2 255-277.
- Pierre Bourdieu's theory of cultural change is more powerfull and comprehensive than other recent theories, which neglect one or another of the important dimensions of cultural markets. Bourdieu's theory conceptualizes both the supply and demand sides of the market, as well as specifying their interaction with external social factors. Two cases from American culture are developed to demonstrate the explanatory power of Bourdieu's theory of cultural change: the demise of tail fins in automobile design and the fall of modernism in architecture. These cases reveal, however, that Bourdieu's theory fails to account for the leveling of cultural hierarchies and the emergence of pluralized cultural fields. The general conditions,for such leveling and pluralization are developed from a comparison of the two cases.
- Martin, JL. 1998. "Authoritative Knowledge and Heteronomy in Classical Sociological Theory." Sociological Theory. 16:2 99-130.
- This article traces the impact of philosophical questions regarding the grounds of moral autonomy and heteronomy (rule-from-another as opposed to rule-from-oneself) on classical sociological theory, arguing that both Weber and Durkheim understood sociology to have a contribution to make in the debate,with Kant over the grounds of ethical action. Both insisted that the only possible ethical action was one within the bounds of rational knowledge that was inherently authoritative, but this sat uneasily with their focus on the relation between concrete social authority and the authoritativeness of beliefs in the sociology of religion. In rejecting Comte's explicit avowal of the embodiment of moral authority in the secular priesthood of sociologist, Weber and Durkheim had to paper over the social authority supporting the formulation of this rational knowledge. Each then produced a sociology of knowledge without a well-specified mechanism, in turn encouraging the development of the sociology of knowledge as ct flawed sub-discipline.
- Emirbayer, M. 1996. "Useful Durkheim." Sociological Theory. 14:2 109-130.
- From the mid-1960s through much of the 1980s, Durkheim's contributions to historical-comparative sociology were decidedly marginalized; the title of one of Charles Tilly's essays, ``Useless Durkheim,'' conveys this prevailing sensibility with perfect clarity. Here, ky contrast, I draw upon writings from Durkheim's later ``religious'' period to show how Durkheim has special relevance today for debates in the historical-comparative field. I examine how his substantive writings shed light on current discussions regarding civil society; how his analytical insights help to show how action within civil society as well as other historical contexts is channelled by cultural, social-structural, and social-psychological configurations (plus transformative human agency); and how his ontological commitment to a ``relational social realisin'' contributes to ongoing attempts to rethink the foundations of historical-comparative investigation.
- Gross, N. 2003. "Richard Rorty's Pragmatism: a Case Study in the Sociology of Ideas." Theory and Society. 32:1 93-148.
- Swartz, DL. 2003. "From Critical Sociology to Public Intellectual: Pierre Bourdieu and Politics." Theory and Society. 32:5-6 791-823.
- By the late 1990s, Pierre Bourdieu had become the primary public intellectual of major social scientific status at the head of the anti-globalization movement that emerged in France and in other Western European countries. This article discusses how Bourdieu became a leading public intellectual, a role that seems to contrast with his early years as a professional sociologist. It explores what seemed to change in Bourdieu's activities and outlook as sociologist and what seems to have remained constant. It identifies several institutional conditions that seemed necessary for Bourdieu to be able to play the kind of public intellectual role he did in his later years. Bourdieu's movement from a peripheral position to a central location in the French intellectual field, the changing character of the field itself, the growing influence of the mass media in French political and cultural life, the failures of the French Socialists in power, a cultural legacy of leading critical intellectuals in France, a unifying national issue of globalization, and the political conjuncture in 1995 all intersected in ways that opened a path for Bourdieu to choose new and more frequent forms of political action. His responses to that combination of factors at different moments reveal both a striking continuity in desire to preserve the autonomy of intellectual life and a change in view and strategy on how best to do that. The article concludes with a brief evaluation of Bourdieu's public intellectual role.
- Gartman, David. 2007. "The Strength of Weak Programs in Cultural Sociology: a Critique of Alexander's Critique of Bourdieu." Theory and Society. 36:5 381-413.
- Jeffrey Alexander's recent book on cultural sociology argues that sociologists must grant the realm of ideas autonomy to determine behavior, unencumbered by interference from instrumental or material factors. He criticizes the sociology of Pierre Bourdieu as ``weak'' for failing to give autonomy to culture by reducing it to self-interested behavior that immediately reflects class position. However, Alexander's arguments seriously distort and misstate Bourdieu's theory, which provides for the relative autonomy of culture through the concepts of habitus and field. Because habitus is a set of durable dispositions conditioned by past structures, it may contradict the changed structures of the present. Further, the influence of the habitus is always mediated by the structure and strategies of the field of contest in which it is deployed, so that the same habitus may motivate different actions in different circumstances. However, Alexander is correct to argue that in Bourdieu's theory culture generally serves to reproduce, not contradict social structures. Yet Bourdieu addresses this and other problems in his later work, in which he argues for the existence of certain cultural universals transcending particular structures.
- Emirbayer, Mustafa & Victoria Johnson. 2008. "Bourdieu and Organizational Analysis." Theory and Society. 37:1 1-44.
- 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.
- Dobbin, Frank. 2008. "The Poverty of Organizational Theory: Comment On: ``bourdieu and Organizational Analysis''." Theory and Society. 37:1 53-63.
- American organizational theorists have not taken up the call to apply Bourdieu's approach in all of its richness in part because, for better or worse, evidentiary traditions render untenable the kind of sweeping analysis that makes Bourdieu's classics compelling. Yet many of the insights found in Bourdieu are being pursued piecemeal, in distinct paradigmatic projects that explore the character of fields, the emergence of organizational habitus, and the changing forms of capital that are key to the control of modern organizations. A number of these programs build on the same sociological classics that Bourdieu built his own theory on. These share the same lineage, even if they were not directly influenced by Bourdieu.
- Vaughan, Diane. 2008. "Bourdieu and Organizations: the Empirical Challenge." Theory and Society. 37:1 65-81.
- Emirbayer and Johnson critique the failure to engage fully Bourdieu's relational analysis in empirical work, but are weak in giving direction for rectifying the problem. Following their recommendation for studying organizations-in-fields and organizations-as-fields, I argue for the benefits of analogical comparison using case studies of organizations as the units of analysis. Doing so maximizes the number of Bourdieusian concepts that can be deployed in an explanation. Further, it maximizes discovery of the oft-neglected links among history, competition, resources, sites of contestation and struggle, relations of dominance and domination, and reproduction of inequality. Perhaps most important, case studies can identify the connection between macro-, meso-, and micro-level factors in the formation and shaping of habitus. To support my claims empirically, I draw from case study research (Vaughan The challenger launch decision: Risky technology, culture, and deviance at NASA, 1996; Signals and interpretive work: The role of culture in a theory of practical action. pp. 28-56, 2002) that verifies Bourdieu's as the ``Theory of Practical Action'' that supplies the micro-level component to the new institutionalism (DiMaggio and Powell, Introduction. pp. 1-41, 1991).
- Baert, Patrick. 2011. "The Sudden Rise of French Existentialism: a Case-study in the Sociology of Intellectual Life." Theory and Society. 40:6 619-644.
- This article offers a new explanation for the sudden rise in popularity of French existentialism, in particular of Sartre's version, in the mid-1940s. It develops a multidimensional account that recognizes both structural and cultural factors. The explanation differs from, and more fully addresses the complexity of the situation than, the two most prominent existing explanations: namely Anna Boschetti's Bourdieu-inspired account and Randall Collins's network-based approach. It is argued that, because of specific socio-political circumstances, the intellectual establishment became tainted and lost legitimacy, with its aesthetic and philosophical views now regarded as outdated if not politically dangerous. This hiatus brought unprecedented publishing opportunities for a new philosophical current, and skilful public performances by the main protagonists helped its ascendancy. Most importantly, existentialist writers colluded with de Gaulle in portraying a cohesive and defiant French nation; and their philosophy, especially in its notion of responsibility, enabled sections of French society to assimilate and make sense of the recent past, whilst drawing a line underneath it so as to move forward.
- Gross, Neil & Ethan Fosse. 2012. "Why Are Professors Liberal?." Theory and Society. 41:2 127-168.
- The political liberalism of professors-an important occupational group and anomaly according to traditional theories of class politics-has long puzzled sociologists. This article sheds new light on the subject by employing a two-step analytic procedure. In the first step, we assess the explanatory power of the main hypotheses proposed over the last half century to account for professors' liberal views. To do so, we examine hypothesized predictors of the political gap between professors and other Americans using General Social Survey data pooled from 1974-2008. Results indicate that professors are more liberal than other Americans because a higher proportion possess advanced educational credentials, exhibit a disparity between their levels of education and income, identify as Jewish, non-religious, or non-theologically conservative Protestant, and express greater tolerance for controversial ideas. In the second step of our article, we develop a new theory of professors' politics on the basis of these findings (though not directly testable with our data) that we think holds more explanatory promise than existing approaches and that sets an agenda for future research.
- Bortolini, Matteo. 2012. "The Trap of Intellectual Success: Robert N. Bellah, the American Civil Religion Debate, and the Sociology of Knowledge." Theory and Society. 41:2 187-210.
- Current sociology of knowledge tends to take for granted Robert K. Merton's theory of cumulative advantage: successful ideas bring recognition to their authors, successful authors have their ideas recognized more easily than unknown ones. This article argues that this theory should be revised via the introduction of the differential between the status of an idea and that of its creator: when an idea is more important than its creator, the latter becomes identified with the former, and this will hinder recognition of the intellectual's new ideas as they differ from old ones in their content or style. Robert N. Bellah's performance during the ``civil religion debate'' of the 1970s is reconstructed as an example of how this mechanism may work. Implications for further research are considered in the concluding section.