Bourdieu View on Education

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There is a general consensus among some sociologists that Bourdieu’s theory is a centrepiece in the explanation of the relationship between the education system and the culture of the dominant society. Bourdieu’s argument that the education system is the vehicle of the culture of the dominant society has been to a great extent influential in most societies, old and present. To a lesser extent some scholars and sociologists regard Bourdieu’s thesis as not precise and vivid enough on some aspects. It is therefore the objective of this write-up to define the key terms such as education, culture, capital culture, dominant society and to explore Bourdieu’s contribution as well as to highlight a few aspects his theory overlooked. Haralambos and Holborn (1994:3) view the culture of a society,” as the way of life of its members, the collection of ideas and habits which they learn, share and transmit from generation to generation. Sullivan (2001:894) regards education in its general sense “as a form of learning in which knowledge, skills and habits of a group of people are transferred from one generation to the next through teaching, training and research.”According to Goldthorpe et al [1987] a dominant society is a group of people with greater power privileges and social status, it also has an established language, behaviour, values and social customs, such traits are often the norm for that society as a whole. Willis [1983] asserts that the culture of a dominant society is usually but not in the majority and achieves its dominance by controlling social institutions such as media and educational institutions. Bourdieu [1986] views capital culture as forms of knowledge, skills,
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