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Chapter

8 Bourdieu.docx


Department
History
Course Code
HIS330H5
Professor
Kevin P.Coleman

Page:
of 1
Bourdieu‟s chapter titled „Structures, Habitus, Practices‟ in Critique of Theoretical
Reason focus on what is habitus, how it is formed, how it conducts are our actions, and
so on. Even though the chapter is titled „Structures, Habitus, Practices‟, everything is
drawn back onto habitus including structures and practices. I can‟t be sure to say I
understood what he means when he defines these three primary terms, but from what I
understood he defines practice as repeated past actions that help structure dispositions
or future feelings (which will soon be defined as the habitus) that are practical (i.e.
serves a certain purpose or function). The structures may be defined as the systems
that create opportunities for practice and the parts required to form habitus (again see
how it all relates back to habitus). The structure may be, for example, social structures
that dictate what someone may and may not do. Habitusare simply actions taken. As
simple as that definition is, habitus appears to be modified and dependent on many
other clauses. Habitus is derived from experiences and previous actions in the past.
The „correct‟ actions done are repeated while „incorrect‟ actions are discarded and are
avoided from being repeated. With enough practice a habitus becomes “second nature
and so forgotten as history”. Habitus can be “homogenized” within a group or a class
without thinking or planning to do so. It would in turn create a norm of what is accepted
within the class or group.
If I were to try to relate this back to hegemony I would talk about repetition and
consent. Firstly and most clearly related, is repetition. Repetition could be seen at the
practice that develops habitus. Thus when the norms are created by habitusthere is no
longer consent (some might argue) because they are forced to agree with norms set
within their culture, class, or so on.