In my book, The Rules of Art,2 I demonstrated that the intellectual world is an autonomous world within the social world, a microcosm which constituted itself progressively through a series of struggles. In the history of the West, the first to acquire their autonomy with regard to power were the jurists, who in twelfth century Bologna succeeded in asserting their collective independence in relation to the Prince, and, simultaneously, their rivalry amongst themselves. As soon as a field is constituted and asserts its existence, it asserts itself into the internal struggle. It is one of the properties of “fields” that the question of belongingness to this universe is at stake in the very midst of these universes. Suppose that, like a French historian by the name of Viala, one makes a study of the French writers of the seventeenth century: one uncovers lists of writers, one compiles these lists and one undertakes to describe the social characteristics of the writers. In terms of a good positivist method, it is beyond reproach; in fact, I believe that it is a serious error.
The Role of Intellectuals Today
Globalization, the Confédération Paysanne, and Symbolic Power
The Confédération paysanne can be described as a marginal farmers' union that represents the vested interests of a tiny minority and that seems to swim against a tide of socio-economic change. At a time when France is increasingly integrated into a global economy, it calls for greater protectionism, a massive increase in state subsidies, and a closure of borders to trade. Yet, far from being dismissed as marginal or anachronistic, the Confédération, at the height of its influence, was hailed as a symbol of the “general interest” and gained the enthusiastic support of a majority of French citizens. In this essay, the author suggests that the success of the Confédération had little to do with conventional political or institutional patterns but was derived instead from its “symbolic power” and its capacity to transform its own cause into a metaphor for opposition to globalization. At a time of profound crisis, the Confédération was able to capture one of the nation's most enduring myths, laying claim to a whole symbolic universe linked to peasant farming. Whilst such symbolism is hardly new in the French context, the Confédération's particular skill was to counterpose this against a dominant image of neo-liberal globalization. It posited peasant farming as an antidote to all the evils of a globalizing world, one in which identity is reaffirmed, tradition is preserved and social bonds are restored.
New Conditions of Work in Society and the Art of Precarity
Rolf Dieter Hepp
blown out of public perception and by defining specific discourses of public discourse. These views, however, are designed to create a picture of reality characterized by the fact that they are ignored by forms of transpositions, as Pierre Bourdieu and
The Socio-analytical Approach
Differences in International Scientific Discourses
East of the Rhine, Pierre Bourdieu's theory and his object-related works are understood primarily as an analysis of French society. Their particular implications are understood in such a way that the analyses capture the particularities of the
Ideas, History and Social Sciences
An Interview with Quentin Skinner
Jérémie Barthas and Arnault Skornicki
the social sciences (from Max Weber to Peter Winch and Pierre Bourdieu). Questions were sent in French, via email, to Quentin Skinner, who answered them in English. The answers were then translated into French and the interview was published in Vers
Politiques de l’écrivain ou politiques de l’écriture ?
Disons-le d’emblée : l’ouvrage de Gisèle Sapiro est impressionnant. Issu d’une thèse de sociologie dirigée par Pierre Bourdieu1, il s’imposera comme une référence. Il intègre un ensemble de travaux qui se sont penchés depuis une vingtaine d’années sur les lettres françaises pendant la guerre2 et inclut de nombreuses archives inédites. Il représente un des accomplissements récents les plus aboutis en matière de sociologie historique des intellectuels.
'An Arabian in My Room'
Shakespeare and the Canon
The literary canon is commonly thought of as ancient, accepted and agreed, and consistent between high and popular cultures. This article demonstrates the falsity of these assumptions, and argues that the canon is always provisional, contingent, iterable and overdetermined by multiple consequences of cultural struggle. Using definitions of canonicity from Harold Bloom, Frank Kermode and Pierre Bourdieu, the article shows how the canon is produced, consumed and reproduced. Picking up on Harold Bloom's use of a poem by Wallace Stevens, the article explores the impact of Arabic adaptations of Shakespeare on canon formation and canonicity.
The editors of Theoria feel especially privileged to present, as the opening contribution to this issue, a remarkable essay by the late great sociologist Pierre Bourdieu. Not long before his untimely death earlier this year, Bourdieu entrusted the journal with the publication of this reflection on, and spirited re-affirmation of, the role of the intellectual and the nature of intellectual engagement. This essay is especially resonant in that it speaks so eloquently to, and by implication endorses, the underlying nature and purpose of Theoria as an editorial project. Thus, as we mourn the passing of this remarkable scholar, we take pleasure in communicating through this essay the passion, compassion, wit and commitment – as well as the vast and singular erudition so lightly worn – that were the hallmarks of his large and impressive oeuvre. We have departed from Theoria’s convention in this instance, and have elected not to provide a preliminary sketch of Bourdieu’s argument. Instead, we invite readers to engage directly, without our intermediation, with his evocation of the “utopia of the collective intellectual”; it is to the realization of this “utopia” that we would like to believe this journal makes a modest contribution. We would thus like to believe Pierre Bourdieu would have taken pleasure in engaging, critically, with the contributions to this issue – contributions which provocatively address, among other things, the globally pressing issues of justice and democracy as well as the need to revisit the prospects of market socialism in the context of developing societies.
History Amongst the Chairs at the Collège de France
Emmanuel Le Roy Ladurie
The important paper that Pierre Bourdieu has submitted to us is extremely interesting.1 Indeed, while I hope that this paper will not create a precedent, the traditional method by which one or more of us introduce one or other candidate for a Chair, followed by an election in favour of a known colleague and/or a recognised personality, seems to me to be far from optimal. Nonetheless, Pierre Bourdieu, as a sociologist, having taken the effort to examine the field of the historian, and this effort having been extremely enriching for me, I can only be struck tautologically by the quality of his contribution: I wish to respond and to discuss it in detail, and follow our colleague’s and my own train of thought with regard to the introduction of candidates. Perhaps tomorrow at the Collège we shall have, not only, as in this case, history seen by a sociologist, but nuclear physics seen by a biologist or mathematics examined from the Chair of one of our colleagues in medicine. Let there be no doubt that then we would also have, as is the case here, something very exciting for us all. Even so, I must repeat that this method is not the one that I prefer for allocating Chairs and choosing new colleagues.
French Democracy Without Borders?
The future of democracy under globalization is the most burning political debate in France today.1 It lies at the heart of the quarrels between souverainistes and federalists; it is the focus of the assault on neoliberalism and on the media led by Pierre Bourdieu and of the attack on globalization mounted in the pages of Le Monde diplomatique.2 In parallel with these intellectual battles of the past decade, there has been a rising tide of social mobilization and protest over globalization in France. The highwater marks start with the vast strike wave of December 1995, described by a Le Monde journalist as the first strikes in an advanced industrial nation against globalization.