By John F. Myles (auth.)
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Extra resources for Bourdieu, Language and the Media
He notes in this way how the actual context of the TV interview is set not really by the studio, but by the social and linguistic fields that determine how well or badly people of different backgrounds will ‘perform’ there: Intonation counts, as do all manner of other things. Much of what we reveal is beyond our conscious control [. ] There are so many registers of human expression, even on the level of words alone – if you keep pronunciation under control, then it’s grammar that goes down the tubes, and so on – that no one, not even the most selfcontrolled individual, can master everything, unless obviously playing a role or using terribly stilted language.
So Scollon draws back from the SFL and Foucauldian principles underlying CDA, and instead understands practice as arising in the ‘contingencies in life, rather than its larger levels’ (Scollon 2001: 22). Postmodernism At a number of points in this book it is noted how postmodern approaches to language and the media give much more scope to textual aspects of media practices than Bourdieu. In Chapter 8 on text messaging in particular, an engagement with postmodern ideas on mobile technology is developed.
The generative aspects of the habitus, its ability to be ‘deployed’ in a wide variety of ways according to contexts, but always within ‘limits’ of its linguistic capacities, is for Butler a key locus of agency. Commenting on Butler’s view, Lovell thus argues that Bourdieu loses touch with this in his understanding of language as practice because he ‘reduces the power of words to the power of social institutions’ (Lovell 2004: 3) and also because he disconnects language from embodied performance: Speech acts are not ‘merely linguistic’ but also bodily, and Butler identified therefore the possibility of discordance between what is spoken and what the body says [.
Bourdieu, Language and the Media by John F. Myles (auth.)