Fields of struggle: a Bourdieusian analysis of conflicts over criminal justice in England, c. 1820-1850

Tennant, M. (2014) Fields of struggle: a Bourdieusian analysis of conflicts over criminal justice in England, c. 1820-1850. Social History, 39 (1). pp. 36-55. ISSN 0307-1022.

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Abstract

The nineteenth century ‘revolution in government’, from which a dramatically altered relationship between central and local government emerged, is of central concern to social historians. This article uses the work of Pierre Bourdieu to analyse the struggles between the magistracy in Cheshire and the Home Office over the centralisation of prisons and policing between the 1820s and 1840s. During this period legislative enactments increased the role of central government in monitoring and overseeing administrative management in both areas and this produced both direct and indirect conflict. The article argues that Bourdieu’s concepts of ‘field’, ‘capital’ and ‘habitus’ provide a framework for analysing the changing relationship between central and local government which makes evident the effects of divisions between and within social classes and enables the varying nature of the course and outcome of conflicts to be understood. Overall the analysis demonstrates the potential of the approach to be used more widely to explore the changing relationship between central and local government in other areas of social policy.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: D History General and Old World > DA Great Britain > DA0020 England > DA0028 History
D History General and Old World > DA Great Britain > DA0020 England > DA0028 History > DA0129 By period > DA0300 Modern, 1485-
H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
H Social Sciences > HN Social history and conditions. Social problems. Social reform
Divisions: pre Nov-2014 > Faculty of Social and Applied Sciences > Law and Criminal Justice Studies
Depositing User: Maryse Tennant
Date Deposited: 18 May 2016 15:11
Last Modified: 30 Sep 2016 10:58
URI: https://create.canterbury.ac.uk/id/eprint/14509

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Last edited: 29/06/2016 12:23:00