Pierre Bourdieu and His Legacy

Authored by: Marcel Fournier

Routledge International Handbook of Contemporary Social and Political Theory

Print publication date:  March  2011
Online publication date:  March  2011

Print ISBN: 9780415548250
eBook ISBN: 9780203875575
Adobe ISBN: 9781135997946

10.4324/9780203875575.ch5

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Abstract

Pierre Bourdieu (1930–2002) was a distinguished and prolific researcher and the author of some of the most seminal works of the twentieth century. His influence in France and elsewhere in the world is almost beyond measure: if the number of times he has been cited by other academics is any indication, he is probably the best-known sociologist in the world. Pierre Bourdieu always recognized his indebtedness to other thinkers, yet it is true to say that his own theoretical stance was both original and ambitious. His goal was to combine a theory of action (with notions of practice, habitus, capital, and strategies), a theory of society (with the concepts of field, domination, reproduction, and symbolic violence), and a theory of sociological knowledge (that included a theory of the role of intellectuals in the public place). Bourdieu's status as a sociologist therefore puts him on the level of Durkheim, Marx, Weber, or Parsons.

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