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Culture and Cultural Capital Print
In the sociology of knowledge, culture is regarded as collectively shared and collectively constructed knowledge.

Many scholars now reject the notion of culture as bounded and consequently reject the notion of subculture, which has been developed with regard to youth cultures. Instead, they see culture as a complex web of shifting patterns that link people in different locales and link social formations of different scales as “landscapes of meaning” and practices of shaping one’s lifestyle. According to this view, any group can construct their own cultural identity. On the side of the individual this means to consider the appropriation of culture as an active process rather than regarding culture as an unchangeable essentiality. Of course, this construction and appropriation process does not happen in a power free zone. Instead it can be viewed as a culture of dominance where culture is used as one of more capital sorts to establish dominance. Cultural capital in the classic sense of the term coined by Bourdieu is the internalisation of dominant symbols and values by the individual. It is one of the mechanisms that explains the reproduction of social inequality through the value given to cultural symbols and meanings within the dominant social class and which are transmitted from parents to children by education. Cultural capital can be acquired through education and the acquisition of these symbols in one’s own lifestyle. (AP)

Bourdieu, Pierre (1983) Ökonomisches Kapital - Kulturelles Kapital - Soziales Kapital. In: ders. (1993): Die verborgenen Mechanismen der Macht, S.49-80. English translation at http://www.viet-studies.org/Bourdieu_capital.htm

Yosso, T.J. (2005) Whose culture has capital? A critical race theory discussion of community cultural wealth, Race, Ethnicity and Education, Vol. 8, No. 1, 68-91.


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Last Updated ( Monday, 22 May 2006 )

Project supported by funding under the European Union's Sixth Research Framework Programme - Coordinated by IRIS e.V.

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