Cultural capital  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
This article is about the sociological term. See also European Capital of Culture.

Cultural capital (le capital culturel) is a sociological concept that has gained widespread popularity since it was first articulated by Pierre Bourdieu. Bourdieu and Jean-Claude Passeron first used the term in Cultural Reproduction and Social Reproduction (1973). In this work he attempted to explain differences in educational outcomes in France during the 1960s. It has since been elaborated and developed in terms of other types of capital in The Forms of Capital (1986); and in terms of higher education, for instance, in The State Nobility (1996). For Bourdieu, capital acts as a social relation within a system of exchange, and the term is extended ‘to all the goods material and symbolic, without distinction, that present themselves as rare and worthy of being sought after in a particular social formation (cited in Harker, 1990:13) and cultural capital acts as a social relation within a system of exchange that includes the accumulated cultural knowledge that confers power and status.

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Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Cultural capital" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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