Unavoidable Idealizations and the Reality of Symbolic Power
After the publication of Simon Susen's "Bourdieusian reflections on language: Unavoidable conditions of the real speech situation", there can be no doubt about the centrality of language for Bourdieu's reconstruction of practice. The crucial role of language should perhaps come as no surprise for a social theorist whose undeniable achievement consists in a rehabilitation of the role of culture within a post-Marxian framework. And yet, Susen's analysis opens up a new challenge and a set of new questions regarding how exactly the mediation of reflexive agency and power-defined social contexts is to be understood. My comments will (1) re-situate Bourdieu's language account in his overall theory, (2) reconstruct the failures of hermeneutic idealism, (3) revisit language after Bourdieu and Habermas and (4) suggest that attending to field-based dialogic practices can point towards a reconciliation of a normative with a power-oriented account of social agency. © 2013 Taylor & Francis.
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)
Kogler. (2013). Unavoidable Idealizations and the Reality of Symbolic Power. Social Epistemology, 27(3-4), 302–314. https://doi.org/10.1080/02691728.2013.818741