Social class, symbolic domination, and Angst: The example of the Norwegian social space

Andreas Scmitz, Magne Flemmen and Lennart Rosenlund argue that "fear"has been largely neglected in social science. In this article the authors show that concerns, fear, and worries are constitutive characteristics of the habitus by investigating the structure of ‘fear manifestations’ in relation to the social space. 

Abstract

Today, ‘fear’ in its diverse facets is a topic growing in relevance in the media discourse. However, apart from analyses of individual psychic pathologies or general macro-sociological diagnoses, it has been largely neglected in (empirical) social sciences. The increasingly influential works of Bourdieu are no exception here, even though the concept of habitus inherently transcends positive interests such as lifestyle preferences, as analyzed in La Distinction. This becomes explicitly clear in his late works, above all in La Misère du monde, where the dispositions of agents are described in terms of the fears and worries associated with their positions in the social space and societal transformation processes.

In this article the authors show that concerns, fear, and worries are constitutive characteristics of the habitus by investigating the structure of ‘fear manifestations’ in relation to the social space. Following Bourdieu’s conception, they construct a model of the Norwegian social space by applying Multiple Correspondence Analysis (MCA) to survey data. They then investigate how questions on fears and concerns are related to the capital structure of the space. The article concludes with a discussion of the findings and a reflection of their implications for a sociology of symbolic domination.

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Published Nov. 16, 2017 11:26 AM - Last modified Nov. 16, 2017 11:26 AM