THEORIZING CLASS, HEALTH AND LIFE-STYLES - CAN BOURDIEU HELP US
UNSPECIFIED. (1995) THEORIZING CLASS, HEALTH AND LIFE-STYLES - CAN BOURDIEU HELP US. SOCIOLOGY OF HEALTH & ILLNESS, 17 (5). pp. 577-604. ISSN 0141-9889Full text not available from this repository.
What is the relationship between class, health and life-styles, and to what extent does health-related knowledge influence subsequent behaviour? These issues have been a source of considerable debate for medical sociologists and others concerned with promoting 'healthier' life-styles over the years. Yet despite a wealth of empirical material, there has been little attempt to theorise this relationship between class, health and lifestyles and the associated issues of structure and agency, accounts and action it raises. This paper attempts to rectify this lacuna through a critical discussion of the work of Pierre Bourdieu, and its relevance to the class, health and life-styles debate. In particular, attention is paid to Bourdieu's analysis of the logic of practice, his concepts of habitus and bodily hexis, and the search for social distinction in the construction of (health-related) life-styles. The paper concludes with a critical commentary on these issues and the relative merits of Bourdieu's analysis for the sociology of health and illness. It is argued that despite certain limitations regarding issues of agency and 'choice', Bourdieu's analysis does indeed shed important light on the health and lifestyles debate, and that further bridge-building exercises of this nature between mainstream theory and the sociology of health and illness are both necessary and fruitful.
|Item Type:||Journal Article|
|Subjects:||R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine > RA0421 Public health. Hygiene. Preventive Medicine
H Social Sciences
H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
|Journal or Publication Title:||SOCIOLOGY OF HEALTH & ILLNESS|
|Publisher:||BLACKWELL PUBL LTD|
|Official Date:||November 1995|
|Number of Pages:||28|
|Page Range:||pp. 577-604|
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