Distinction A Social Critique of the Judgement of Taste

ISBN-10: 0674212770

ISBN-13: 9780674212770

Edition: 1984

List price: $40.50 Buy it from $27.17
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Description:

No judgement of taste is innocent. In a word, we are all snobs. Pierre Bourdieu brilliantly illuminates this situation of the middle class in the modern world. France's leading sociologist focusses here on the French bourgeoisie, its tastes and preferences. Distinction is at once a vast ethnography of contemporary France and a dissection of the bourgeois mind. In the course of everyday life people constantly choose between what they find aesthetically pleasing and what they consider tacky, merely trendy, or ugly. Bourdicu bases his study on surveys that took into account the multitude of social factors that play a part in a Frenchperson's choice of clothing, furniture, leisure activities, dinner menus for guests, and many other matters of taste. What emerges from his analysis is that social snobbery is everywhere in the bourgeois world. The different aesthetic choices people make are all distinctions-that is, choices made in opposition to those made by other classes. Taste is not pure. Bourdieu finds a world of social meaning in the decision to order bouillabaisse, in our contemporary cult of thinness, in the "California sports" such as jogging and cross-country skiing. The social world, he argues, functions simultaneously as a system of power relations and as a symbolic system in which minute distinctions of taste become the basis for social judgement. The topic of Bourdieu's book is a fascinating one: the strategies of social pretension are always curiously engaging. But the book is more than fascinating. It is a major contribution to current debates on the theory of culture and a challenge to the major theoretical schools in contemporary sociology.
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Book details

List price: $40.50
Copyright year: 1984
Publisher: Harvard University Press
Publication date: 10/15/1987
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 640
Size: 6.50" wide x 9.25" long x 1.25" tall
Weight: 1.980
Language: English

Pierre Bourdieu(1930-2002) was professor of sociology at the Collège de France. He is the author or coauthor of more than twenty works, includingDistinction,Homo Academicus,Pascalian Meditations,On Television,State Nobility,Acts of Resistance,An Invitation to Reflexive Sociology, andScience of Science and Reflexivity, the last two also published by the University of Chicago Press.

Preface to the English-Language Edition
Introduction
A Social Critique of the Judgement of Taste
The Aristocracy of Culture
The Titles of Cultural Nobility
Cultural Pedigree
The Economy of Practices
The Social Space and Its Transformations
Class Condition and Social Conditioning
A Three-Dimensional Space
Reconversion Strategies
The Habitus and the Space of Life-Styles
The Homology between the Spaces
The Universes of Stylistic Possibles
The Dynamics of the Fields
The Correspondence between Goods Production and Taste Production
Symbolic Struggles
Class Tastes and Life-Styles
The Sense of Distinction
The Modes of Appropriation of the Work of Art
The Variants of the Dominant Taste
The Mark of Time
Temporal and Spiritual Powers
Cultural Goodwill
Knowledge and Recognition
Education and the Autodidact
Slope and Thrust
The Variants of Petit-Bourgeois Taste
The Declining Petite Bourgeoisie
The Executant Petite Bourgeoisie
The New Petite Bourgeoisie
From Duty to the Fun Ethic
The Choice of the Necessary
The Taste for Necessity and the Principle of Conformity
The Effects of Domination
Culture and Politics
Selective Democracy
Status and Competence
The Right to Speak
Personal Opinion
The Modes of Production of Opinion
Dispossession and Misappropriation
Moral Order and Political Order
Class Habitus and Political Opinions
Supply and Demand
The Political Space
The Specific Effect of Trajectory
Political Language
Conclusion: Classes and Classifications
Embodied Social Structures
Knowledge without Concepts
Advantageous Attributions
The Classification Struggle
The Reality of Representation and the Representation of Reality
Postscript: Towards a 'Vulgar' Critique of 'Pure' Critiques
Disgust at the 'Facile'
The 'Taste of Reflection' and the 'Taste of Sense'
A Denied Social Relationship
Parerga and Paralipomena
The Pleasure of the Text
Appendices
Some Reflections on the Method
Complementary Sources
Statistical Data
Associations: A Parlour Game
Notes
Credits
Index
Tables
Class preferences for singers and music
Aesthetic disposition, by education capital
Aesthetic disposition, by class and education
Knowledge of composers and musical works, by education and class of origin
Furniture purchases in the dominant class, by education and social origin
Some indicators of economic capital in different fractions of the dominant class, 1966
Some indicators of cultural practice in different fractions of the dominant class, 1966
Types of books preferred by different fractions of the dominant class, 1966
Social origin of members of the dominant class, by class fraction, 1970
Rate of employment of women aged 25-34, by education, 1962 and 1968
Changes in morphology and asset structure of the class fractions, 1954-1975
Changes in morphology and asset structure of the class fractions, 1954-1968
Morphological changes within the dominant class, 1954-1975
Morphological changes within the middle class, 1954-1975
Changes in class morphology and use of educational system, 1954-1968
Annual household expenditures on food: skilled manual workers, foremen and clerical workers, 1972
Yearly spending by teachers, professionals and industrial and commercial employers, 1972
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