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RE: [xmca] Gratier, Greenfield, & Isaac

It seems to me a playing out - at least to some extent of Bourdieu's larger theory.  That increasing the cultural capital of the teacher in relation to the class would increase the level of social capital, which would lead to some of the findings they present.  A lack of cultural capital (usually assumed on the part of the students) would certainly lead to more difficulties in communication and the students feeling more uncomfortable in class.
But this leads to a fairly radical assumption on the part of the authors concerning habitus, even in terms of Bourdieu's theory.  That is that cultural capital can be taught overtly, as cultural capital - Bourdieu seems to emphasize that we learn cultural capital more or less unconsciously, through everyday experience in the right situations (whether it is with parents or in a school system where the type of cultural capital that leads to easy social capital is pervasive).  I'm not so sure this is possible.
I have another difficult which is that I read habitus as defining class distinctions rather than cultural distinctions, and that I'm not sure his ideas translate between the two, or make that much sense if they do.  The types of cultures like Latino/Latina cultures are going to have class distinctions defined by different habitas, defined most easily by different levels of economic capital, and different recogntions of symbolic capital (and symbolic violence),  To say a population so large has a single type of habitus I think is problematic - especially when using a terms such as collectivist, which is both categorical and far too broad I think to be really salient in describing classes, let alone entire cultures (I think level and type of social capital might be more appropriate if you are going to use Bourdeiu's theory as a starting point).


From: xmca-bounces@weber.ucsd.edu on behalf of Jay Lemke
Sent: Thu 12/3/2009 12:16 AM
To: XMCA Forum
Subject: [xmca] Gratier, Greenfield, & Isaac

I don't know how many people have yet had a chance to look at the MCA 
article-of-the-month (Gratier, Greenfield, & Isaac on communicative 
habitus and attunement in classrooms).

I must have missed something, so could someone explain to me how they 
derive the hypothesis that the more culturally attuned classroom will 
have more criticism (by the teacher? or by everyone?) and less praise, 
than the mismatched classroom?

And what do you think generally about the methodology in this work?


Jay Lemke
Professor (Adjunct, 2009-2010)
Educational Studies
University of Michigan
Ann Arbor, MI 48109

Visiting Scholar
Laboratory for Comparative Human Communication
University of California -- San Diego
La Jolla, CA
USA 92093

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