2008 年 53 巻 1 号 p. 37-53,200
In this paper I will first introduce Bourdieu’s idea of field, a network, or configuration, of objective relations between positions. Then I will show how it integrates theory and empirical research. In the history of Sociology, the relationship between theory and empirical research has been a grand theme, and Bourdieu was committed to integrating the two throughout his career. I will also examine the work of Blumer, an important predecessor to Bourdieu. While both his “sensitizing concept” and his “definitive concept” have limits, Bourdieu’s “open concepts” which include habitus, capital and field have more possibilities and significances than Blumer’s. The field is a social sphere which has a limit around itself and each has its own rules within. For Bourdieu, the field is considered together with habitus and capital, and also as a part of his theory of practice. The concept of field enables us to analyze social phenomena for which we have lacked a theoretical framework. We can also use the concept of field to relate and integrate differentempirical research. One example can be found in the study of social difference. Bourdieu’s sociology makes sense in combination with the works of other sociologists because it owes so much to them. We should ask the question “Bourdieu and what else?” rather than think in terms of a dichotomy such as “Bourdieu or not.” This will lead to a productive discussion.