The American Journal of Semiotics

Volume 22, Issue 1/4, 2006

James Albright
Pages 109-130

Literacy Education after Bourdieu

Adopting a Bourdieusian perspective, this paper addresses literacy education as a sociological field and attempts to evaluate and re-inscribe aesthetic, literary, historical, economic, philosophical and other positions within it as a means for framing a new research and pedagogical agenda. Literacy education as a social field is conceptualized as a structure of provisional balances within which various forms of power and capital circulate. Position, distinction, and contest, within sites in fields like literacy education, structure social space and enable reproduction and change. A heuristic that weds Fairclough’s (1989) work on textual production and consumption with Bourdieu’s model of social space as relational, structured, and contested fields is proposed.