Pierre Bourdieu  

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Pierre Bourdieu (August 1, 1930January 23, 2002) was an acclaimed French sociologist whose work employed methods drawn from a wide range of disciplines: from philosophy and literary theory to sociology and anthropology. He is best known for his book Distinction: A Social Critique of the Judgment of Taste, in which he tried to connect aesthetic judgments to positions in social space. The most notable aspect of Bourdieu's theory is the development of methodologies, combining both theory and empirical data, that attempt to dissolve some of the most troublesome antagonisms in theory and research, trying to reconcile such difficulties as how to understand the subject within objective structures (in the process, trying to reconcile structure and agency).

Bourdieu also pioneered methodological frameworks and terminologies such as cultural, social, and symbolic capital, and the concepts of habitus, field, and symbolic violence. Bourdieu's work emphasized the role of practice and embodiment in social dynamics. It builds upon the theories of Ludwig Wittgenstein, Maurice Merleau-Ponty, Edmund Husserl, Georges Canguilhem, Karl Marx, Gaston Bachelard, Max Weber, Emile Durkheim, and Norbert Elias, among others. A notable influence on Bourdieu was Blaise Pascal after whom Bourdieu titled the book Pascalian Meditations.

Perhaps the nearest equivalent in the English-speaking world would be Noam Chomsky.

Selected publications

  • Algeria 1960: The Disenchantment of the World: The Sense of Honour: The Kabyle House or the World Reversed: Essays, Cambridge Univ Press 1979.
  • Les héritiers: les étudiants et la culture (1964), Eng. The Inheritors: French Students and Their Relations to Culture, University of Chicago Press 1979.
  • Esquisse d'une théorie de la pratique, précédé de trois études d'ethnologie kabyle, (1972), Eng. Outline of a Theory of Practice, Cambridge University Press 1977.
  • Homo Academicus, (French Edition) Les Éditions de Minuit, Paris, 1984. (English Edition) Polity, 1990.
  • Reproduction in Education, Society and Culture (Theory, Culture and Society Series), Sage, 1990, with Jean-Claude Passeron (in French: La Reproduction. Éléments pour une théorie du système d'enseignement, Minuit, 1970).
  • with Luc Boltanski e P. Maldidier, La défense du corps, in Social Science Information, Vol. 10, n° 4, pp. 45–86, 1971.
  • with Luc Boltanski, Le titre et le poste : rapports entre système de production et système de reproduction, in Actes de la recherche en sciences sociales, Vol. 1, n° 2, pp. 95 – 107, 1975
  • with Luc Boltanski, Le fétichisme de la langue, in Actes de la recherche en sciences sociales, Vol. 1, n° 4, pp. 2– 32, 1975.
  • with Luc Boltanski, La production de l'idéologie dominante, in Actes de la recherche en sciences sociales, Vol. 2, n° 2-3, 1976, pp. 4–73, 1976-06.
  • Bourdieu, Pierre, Distinction: a Social Critique of the Judgment of Taste, trans. Richard Nice, 1984.Harvard University Press.
  • Choses dites, 1987 Eng. In Other Words: Essays toward a Reflective Sociology, Stanford, 1990.
  • " The Corporatism of the Universal: The Role of Intellectuals in the Modern World ". TELOS 81 (Fall 1989). New York: Telos Press
  • Language and Symbolic Power, Harvard University Press 1991.
  • The Political Ontology of Martin Heidegger, Polity, 1991.
  • The Love of Art: European Art Museums and Their Public, Stanford University Press, 1991.
  • Language & Symbolic Power, Harvard University Press, 1991; paperback edition, Polity, 1992.[1]
  • An Invitation to Reflexive Sociology with Loïc Wacquant, University of Chicago Press and Polity, 1992.
  • with Hans Haacke, Free Exchange, Stanford University Press, 1995.
  • with Luc Boltanski and Robert Castel, Photography: A Middle-Brow Art, Stanford University Press, 1996.
  • Les régles de l'art, 1992; Eng. Rules of Art: Genesis and Structure of the Literary Field, Stanford University Press, 1996.
  • with Monique De Saint Martin, Jean-Claude Passeron, Academic Discourse: Linguistic Misunderstanding and Professorial Power, Polity 1996.
  • Practical Reason: On the Theory of Action, Stanford University Press, 1998.
  • State nobility: Elite Schools in the Field of Power, Polity, 1998.
  • Weight of the World: Social Suffering in Contemporary Society, Polity, 1999.
  • On Television, New Press, 1999.
  • Acts of Resistance: Against the Tyranny of the Market, New Press, 1999.
  • Pascalian Meditations, Polity, 2000.
  • La domination masculine, 1998; Eng. Masculine Domination, Polity, 2001.
  • Interventions politiques (1960–2000). Textes & contextes d’un mode d’intervention politique spécifique, 2002.
  • Contre-Feux, 1998; Eng. Counterfire: Against the Tyranny of the Market, Verso Books 2003.
  • Science de la science et réflexivité, 2002; Eng. Science of Science and Reflexivity, Polity 2004.
  • The Social Structures of the Economy, Polity 2005.

See also




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