Reinventing Practice in a Disenchanted World: Bourdieu and Urban Poverty in Oaxaca, Mexico

By Cheleen Ann-Catherine Mahar | Go to book overview

CHAPTER SUMMARIES AND DISCUSSION
QUESTIONS FORTEACHERS AND STUDENTS

INTRODUCTION
IN THE INTRODUCTION I discuss the book and its main topic, which is the Colonia Hermosa and its residents, by beginning with the term disenchantment, the change from what was a [natural] world of sociability to one that has been reduced to its economic dimension. I argue that one can understand the transformation from migrant to urban citizen through a process of disenchantment, a concept that is linked to the work of both Max Weber and Pierre Bourdieu. I also discuss the importance of positionality with regard to fieldwork and the need for anthropologists to be reflexive in their practice. By this account, I hope that the reader will understand that though the social scientist conducts interviews, records life histories, and even takes surveys, we all see the world through the lens of our personal and class habitus. As a result we must acknowledge the weight of our own histories on the work we produce. As an example, I give a brief overview of my initial approach to working in Colonia Hermosa.In the classroom the introduction may form as the basis for a series of [free-writes] or class discussions on the following topics:
1. Students may consider their own work in the light of their own positionality. What do you bring to the table? What do you carry as you begin a project?
2. Do you understand the term disenchantment? How might you imagine the term to be useful?
3. How do you think or imagine that people change class positions in society? Perhaps you have the experiences of your own families to

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Reinventing Practice in a Disenchanted World: Bourdieu and Urban Poverty in Oaxaca, Mexico
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • To the Reader ix
  • Acknowledgments xi
  • Introduction 1
  • Chapter 1- Colonia Life in Oaxaca 12
  • Chapter 2- Creating the Object of Study 27
  • Chapter 3- Consuelo's Story 40
  • Chapter 4- Place Andi Dentity 55
  • Chapter 5- Work, Money, and Dreams- Transforming Capital 89
  • Chapter 6- Social Capital as a Strategic Choice 111
  • Chapter 7- The Disenchanted World and the Question of Success 143
  • Chapter Summaries and Discussion Questions Forteachers and Students 154
  • Notes 161
  • Bibliography 167
  • Index 171
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