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Bourdieu for Educators

Bourdieu for Educators
Policy and Practice

March 2015 | 144 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc
Educational change and reform on a larger scale  

Bourdieu for Educators: Policy and Practice brings the revolutionary research and thinking of Pierre Bourdieu (1930-2002) of France to public educational leaders in North America, Canada, Australia, and the U.K. This text brings Bourdieu’s work into the arena of elementary and secondary educational reform and change, and offers policy, research, and practice discussions. Authors Fenwick W. English and Cheryl L. Bolton use Bourdieu to challenge the standards movement in different countries, the current vision of effective management, and the open-market notion connecting pay to performance. The text shows that connecting pay to performance won’t improve education for the poorest group of school students in the U.S., Canada, or the U.K., regardless of how much money is spent trying to erase the achievement gap. The authors lay out the bold educational agenda of Pierre Bourdieu by demonstrating that educational preparation must take into account larger socioeconomic-political realities in order for educational change and reform to make an impact.
Chapter 1: Introducing Pierre Bourdieu to Educational Practitioners
Bourdieu’s Biography  
Vielseitigkeit: What is Distinctive About Bourdieu  
Understanding the Nature of Pedagogic Work as Political Struggle  
The “Culture Wars” in the U.S. and the U.K.: Similarities and Differences  
The Battle Over the Correct Academic Subjects and Proper Pedagogic Work  
The Concept of Misrecognition and How It Works  
Some History with Misrecognition in the Past  
Building Awareness of the Forces at Play  
Without New Eyes: The Blinders of Doxa as Orthodoxy  
Bourdieu as the Public Intellectual, Activist and Provocateur  
Chapter 2: Unmasking the School Asymmetry and the Social System
Bourdieusian Cornerstones  
Bourdieu’s Concept of Habitus  
An Example of Neighborhood Habitus  
A Case Study of How Family Habitus Works to Shape Career Aspirations  
The Intersection of Class, Social Space and the Field  
An Example of a Field with Its Own Logic  
The Cultural Arbitrary  
The Plight of Minority Children Facing the Dominant Cultural Arbitrary in Schools  
How the System Works as a Game  
Who Benefits from Schools as They Are?  
Illuiso and Unquestioned Loyalty to Continuing Orthodoxies  
The Bounded Nature of Choice Within a Designated Social Space  
Educational Inequalities Must Remain Unnamed  
Connecting the Dots: The Importance of Family in School Success  
The Challenge of Reducing Social Inequality as an Educational Goal  
Chapter 3: The Curriculum, Qualifications and Life Chances
The Three Forms of Capital  
Empirical Validation of the Impact of Social Capital on School Success  
The Power of Cultural Capital and Bourdieu’s Own Experience as a Student  
Schools as Institutionalized Embodiments of Forms of Cultural Capital  
Capital, Power, Symbolic Violence, and Scholastic Habitus  
Two Recent Examples of Symbolic Power (Violence) with School Curricula  
Social Origin and School Success: Historical and Continuing Evidence of the Linkage Between Them  
Academic Failure as the “Fault” of the Student?  
Academic Credentials—Essential Capital?  
The Hidden Curriculum, Cultural Values and Schooling Success  
Calculating Life Chances: The Academic vs. Vocational Education Debate  
The Issue of the Mal-Distribution of Opportunity  
Chapter 4: The Shifting Control of Leadership Preparation
The Construction of National Leadership Standards in the U.K. and the U.S.  
The Major Epistemological Steps Behind National Standards  
Core Technologies and the Reification of the Status Quo  
The Shifting Nature of the Contestation and Changer in Power in the Education Field  
The De-Contextualization of School Leaders via Job Standardization  
The Reformers Blinkered Vision for Change: They Just Don’t See It  
Chapter 5: A Retrospective Look at Bourdieu’s Impact
The Social Field of Education is Not Static  
Education Is Simultaneously a Means and an End  
Schooling as the Cultural Arbitrary Demonizes Those who are “Otherized”  
The Dominant Consumer Culture in Education Undermines Its Moral and Humanistic Value  
Educational Reform Will Always Benefit and Advantage the Reformers  
The Dilemma of School Leadership, Agent of the State or of Humanity?  

The book is excellent. Dr. English and Cheryl L. Bolton do a masterful job in explaining how educational leadership is actually under attack by outside forces. The landscape has changed significantly due to political forces disguised by accreditation initiatives. [...] Bourdieu for Educators with the application of Dr. English's ideas and insights is absolutely essential reading and adoption for those wanting to rescue the field of educational leadership and administration from the "Billionnaires Boys Club" and many other destructive factions.

Dr. William Kritsonis
University of Texas of the Permian Basin

While this is an excellent exploration and evaluation of Bourdieu's impact on educational theory, it is somewhat dense for undergraduate students of education. It may be better suited to postgraduate students, especially those working around educational policy development and analysis.

Dr Louise Campbell
Moray House School of Education, Edinburgh University
November 7, 2016

This is a key reading for those interested in Bourdieu work. Helpful for students and academics

Miss Joana Ferreira Fonseca
School of Edu. Theology and Leadership, St Mary's University, Twickenham
October 5, 2016

Excellent resource for enhancing students' thinking of the educational philosophy on a higher level.

Mrs Liana Beattie
Faculty of Education (Ormskirk), Edge Hill University
March 9, 2016

Sample Materials & Chapters

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