Azaola, Marta Cristina
Revisiting Bourdieu: alternative educational systems in the light of the theory of social and cultural reproduction
International Studies in Sociology of Education, 22, (2), .
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This paper reflects upon the principles and practice of an alternative educational system operating in rural Mexico in the light of Bourdieu's theory of cultural and social reproduction. Bourdieu’s theory seeks to explain processes of reproduction of power relations within schools and society; whereas alternative educational systems seek to expand educational access in deprived areas in order to counteract processes of social inequality. The paper argues that, although Bourdieu's theory does not fully explain the gradual inclusion of more people from disadvantaged backgrounds into education through alternative educational systems, processes of social reproduction in deprived communities still occur mainly because of lack of state support after primary school level and a shortage of better infrastructure and opportunities for this sector of the population. Since the widespread upward educational and class mobility of the rural poor has not yet been achieved, the paper concludes that the processes of cultural and social reproduction continue despite the introduction of alternative educational systems
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