Pierre Bourdieu: Sociology is a Combat Sport

‘La sociologie est un sport de combat’ was how Pierre Bourdieu stated it. My first brush with Bourdieu was through the articulation of ‘cultural capital’ and ‘symbolic violence’. It is quite a challenge to engage with the ‘Bourdieuesque’ deployment of language – complex constructions and almost a maze-like language interface. But, it is all worth the while. Apart from being a prolific ‘sociological genius’, what strikes me most is that he became, through his ‘combat sport’, an inspiration for so many movements opposed to neo-liberalism and globalisation in France and elsewhere. His legacy of social concern lives on, and the world is better for that.

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