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Working with Bourdieu

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This is a workshop I gave to higher degree candidates at the University of Sydney.

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Working with Bourdieu

  1. 1. Working with Bourdieu Dr Scott Eacott Office of Educational Leadership School of Education The University of New South Wales
  2. 2. Acknowledgement Eacott, S. (2016). Mobilizing Bourdieu to think anew about educational leadership research. In M. Murphy & C. Costa (Eds.), Theory as method in research: On Bourdieu, social theory and education (pp. 117-131). London: Routledge. Twitter: @ScottEacott Web: scotteacott.com Academia.edu | Researchgate | UNSW profile | ORCID @ScottEacott
  3. 3. Presentation Overview • Introduce my claims • Finding Bourdieu • Thinking with Bourdieu • Enduring struggles • An ongoing program • Thinking anew • Dialogue and debate @ScottEacott
  4. 4. INTRODUCE MY CLAIMS Setting the scene @ScottEacott
  5. 5. Ladwig (1996) Dr Scott Eacott
  6. 6. Some preliminaries • I embrace the fuzziness • Bourdieu as a methodological rather than theoretical resource • Beyond field, capital and habitus @ScottEacott
  7. 7. FINDING BOURDIEU A road less travelled @ScottEacott
  8. 8. Path matters • Dissatisfied with status quo • Methodology not content • Categories of Bourdieusian thinking – Defenders of the legacy; – Partial appropriators; – Critical revisers; and – Repudiators. @ScottEacott
  9. 9. Thinking through the literatures • Increasing use in educational leadership • Thinking through this literature – Gunter’s work on knowledge workers; – English on misrecognition; – Thomson’s work on school leadership; – Wilkinson’s on working at the margins; – My own program • Appropriation for school leadership preparation • Problematizing the intellectual gaze | temporality; – Wood’s thesis @ScottEacott
  10. 10. Lisa Adkins (2011) … has not sought to argue that we should (let alone attempted to) ‘apply’ or ‘map’ Bourdieu’s writings on time to and on to recent economic events, for such an application or mapping is neither desirable nor helpful. Such methods would, for instance, leave the received terms of those events entirely intact (pp. 361-362). @ScottEacott
  11. 11. THINKING WITH BOURDIEU Challenging the orthodoxy @ScottEacott
  12. 12. Thinking with • Native theories • To take as one’s object the social work of construction of the pre-constructed object (Bourdieu & Wacquant, 1992) • The logic of discovery more so than validation @ScottEacott
  13. 13. Bourdieu (2000[1997]) … it is clear that, to secure some chance of really knowing what one is doing, one has to unfold what is inscribed in the various relations of implication in which the thinker and his thought are caught up, that is, the presuppositions he engages and the inclusions or exclusions he unwittingly performs (p. 99). @ScottEacott
  14. 14. ENDURING STRUGGLES An ongoing project @ScottEacott
  15. 15. Some matters • Science • Ontological complicity • Theory and method • Temporality • Socio-spatial conditions • The fuzziness • A willingness to not accept the world, or the scholastic endeavour, at face value and to ask questions of everything @ScottEacott
  16. 16. AN ONGOING PROGRAM Embracing the grey @ScottEacott
  17. 17. A relational approach Five relational extensions: • The centrality of ‘organizing’ in the social world creates an ontological complicity in researchers (and others) that makes it difficult to epistemologically break from the spontaneous understanding of the social world; • Rigorous social scientific scholarship would therefore call into question the very foundations on which the contemporarily popular discourse are constructed; • The contemporary social condition cannot be separated from the ongoing and inexhaustible recasting of organizing; • Studying relationally enables the overcoming of the contemporary, and arguably enduring, tensions of individualism and collectivism, and structure and agency; and • In doing so, there is a productive – rather than merely critical – space to theorize. @ScottEacott
  18. 18. THINKING ANEW More than critique @ScottEacott
  19. 19. Some thoughts • Social theory is generative • Chasing research objects always in motion • Theory travels better than empiricism • Scholarship as an invitation • The organizing of scholarly communities • Programmatic not projects • Chase ideas and not money @ScottEacott
  20. 20. Dialogue and Debate A presentation at: Working with Social Theory Research Seminar Series Working with Bourdieu University of Sydney Sydney NSW AUSTRALIA 22 October 2015 @ScottEacott
  21. 21. Contact Details Dr Scott Eacott PhD MLMEd GradCertPTT BTeach/BSocSci FACEL Director, Office of Educational Leadership School of Education University of New South Wales Sydney NSW AUSTRALIA 2052 P: +61 2 9385 0704 T: @ScottEacott E: s.eacott@unsw.edu.au W: http://scotteacott.com @ScottEacott

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