The structuration of lifestyles in the city of Porto

A relational approach

Authored by: Virgílio Borges Pereira

Routledge International Handbook of the Sociology of Art and Culture

Print publication date:  September  2015
Online publication date:  September  2015

Print ISBN: 9780415855112
eBook ISBN: 9780203740248
Adobe ISBN: 9781135008895


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Based on an interpretation of the sociological legacy of Pierre Bourdieu’s work, with a particular focus on the reading of Distinction, this chapter shows the potential of this perspective to understand the configuration of the space of lifestyles in the city of Porto, Portugal. For this purpose, the paper includes the information from an ‘extended case study’ on the city between 1998 and 2001. Specifically, it proposes a relational reading of the cultural practices and of the preferences of social agents questioned during the course of the research in light of the analytical programme developed by Bourdieu, using the Multiple Correspondence Analysis technique. Following this exercise, the paper also intends to explore the social composition underlying the identified relational configuration. This approach is then linked with a reading of some of the results from sociological research works that have replicated and innovated studies on cultural practices and tastes, and, based on the ethnographies that completed the analysis of the case of Porto, gives us food for thought on the relevance of the input of Pierre Bourdieu’s theory for the analysis of the configurations of relationships between culture and class in the contemporary city.

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