Pierre bourdieu’s critique of scholarly reason

Philosophy and Social Criticism 31 (1):89-107 (2005)
This paper investigates the implications of Pierre Bourdieu’s recent reformulation of his social theory as a critique of ‘scholarly reason’. This reformulation is said to point towards a definition of social theory as a sociologically informed version of the Kantian concept of ‘critique’. It is argued that, by this means, Bourdieu is able to extend and develop the critique of ‘intellectualism’ in the philosophies of Wittgenstein and Merleau-Ponty and, furthermore, to ground this critique by showing how the intellectualist error arises from a failure to reflect on the ‘social conditions of possibility’ of reason. The three forms of the critique of scholarly reason (pertaining to the theoretical, the moral-practical and the aesthetic forms of reason) are then briefly presented. In the final section, the critique of scholarly reason is shown to provide the basis for a convincing response to critiques of Bourdieu’s work from critical theorists drawing on Habermas’s conception of discursive rationality. In particular, it is argued that critical theorists influenced by Habermas typically confuse ‘practical reflexivity’ with ‘intellectual reflection’ - the standpoint of ‘scholarly reason’. Finally, it is shown that Bourdieu’s own account of the unity of theory and practice is nonetheless deficient, and must be supplanted with an account centred on the idea of existential clarification. Key Words: Bourdieu • critical theory • Habermas • intellectualism • reflexivity.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1177/0191453705048321
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history Request removal from index
Download options
PhilPapers Archive

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy on self-archival     Papers currently archived: 22,631
External links
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library
References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Monthly downloads

Added to index


Total downloads

21 ( #195,937 of 1,938,717 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

1 ( #452,035 of 1,938,717 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature

Start a new thread
There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.