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Bourdieu (Pierre), On Television

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  1. On Bourdieu's sociology : society as social space
  2. The social re-construction of reality through television
  3. Invisible censorship and fast thinkers
  4. The news as a show
  5. The influence of television on all fields of cultural production

Television has become increasingly important in today's society and it has become a tool for expressing an opinion or conveying a message to the public. It is also able to influence other fields in the social space through which it enables a series of interactions. It also determines the consequences of economic constraints in a society. We will try to examine some of these internal constraints (and their consequences) that rule the television industry, along with some examples which can explain the situation.

[...] There is also a trend to dramatisation and Manicheism in showing information as a show; as Bourdieu says, debates are "modeled on wrestling": the main issue lies mostly in the opposition between individuals, more than in the solutions they could propose for the real social or politic problems. As a result, the real problems are evacuated from "political" debates, which tend to resemble in fact to empty chats between people who only want to appear on television in order to get known from the potential electors The influence of television on all fields of cultural production Bourdieu's analysis of the journalistic field is conducted from the perspective of the changes that television has wrought not only on this field, but on all fields of cultural production. [...]


[...] But where Marx saw society as a whole conditioned by the relations of production - the "class struggle" - Bourdieu sees society as a ?collection of sets compartmentalised and divided. This collection of sets is the result of a complex historical phenomenon called differentiation, which is used as a principle of distribution of power. These various sets are called fields. Thus, Bourdieu mentions the economic, literary, scientific and journalistic fields, for example. The origin of the various fields remains unclear; Bourdieu does not explain the emergence of fields in certain areas and not in others. [...]

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