SEARCH

SEARCH BY CITATION

Abstract

Pierre Bourdieu's approach to sociology has been so widely recognized as being innovative that his innovations can be said to have been academically incorporated to the degree of having-been-innovative. On the other hand, the more recent work of Bruno Latour seems to offer a fresh innovative impetus to sociology. Over against Bourdieu's relational sociology, Latour's relationist sociology overcomes the subject-object dichotomy, and abandons the notions of ‘society’ and ‘the social’. In this contribution, a comparison is made between the ideas of Bourdieu and Latour on the question of what sociology should look like, specifically focusing on their respective ideas on what can be called the relational. A Latourian critique of Bourdieu is provided, as well as a Bourdieusian analysis of Latourian sociology. Rather than ending up with two different ‘paradigms’, an attempt is made on the basis of Foucault's archaeology of discourse to view Bourdieusian and Latourian sociology as distinct positions within a discourse on the relational.