Over the last three decades, Pierre Bourdieu has produced one of the most imaginative and subtle bodies of social theory and research of the post war era. Yet, despite the his influence, no single introduction to his wide--ranging work is available. This book offers a systematic and accessible overview, providing interpretative keys to the internal logic of Bourdieua s work by explicating thematic and methodological principles underlying his work. Firstly Loic Wacquant provides a clear and systematic account of the main themes of Bourdieua s work, outlining his conception of knowledge, his theory of practice and his distinctive methods of analysis. In the second part of the book Wacquant collaborates with Bourdieu to discuss the central concepts of Bourdieua s work, confront some criticisms and objections, and develop Bourdieua s views on the relations between sociology, philosophy, history and politics. Finally Bourdieu displays his sociological approach in practice: beginning with the practical demands of research, he moves, step by step, to a formulation of the principles of sociological reason. Supplemented by an extensive and up--to--date bibliography, this book will be essential reading for anyone who wishes to understand Bourdieua s unique and outstanding contribution to contemporary social thought.
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