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Capitalizing on Bourdieu : how useful are concepts of `social capital` and `social field` for researching `marginalized` young women?

journal contribution
posted on 2005-01-01, 00:00 authored by Andrea Allard
This article considers Bourdieu’s concepts of ‘social capital’ and ‘social fields’, comparing and contrasting his use of these concepts with that of James Coleman and Robert Putnam. It examines how Bourdieu’s ideas offer a different way of understanding the lives of economically disadvantaged young women designated as ‘at risk’ of leaving school early. A micro-level analysis is made of ‘Bluey’s story’, a narrative derived from data gathered during a three-year research project on young women’s negotiations from the margins of education and work in Australia. Deconstructing Bluey’s narrative reveals how social capital is deployed (sometimes unsuccessfully) in a range of social fields. Such narratives can thus be used to ‘speak back’ to educational policies, to provide alternative insights into the issues and needs of economically disadvantaged young women and to challenge current constructs of ‘at risk’.

History

Journal

Theory and research in education

Volume

3

Issue

1

Pagination

63 - 79

Publisher

Sage

Location

Thousand Oaks, Calif.

ISSN

1477-8785

eISSN

1741-3192

Language

eng

Publication classification

C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal

Copyright notice

2005, Sage Publications

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