[lit-ideas] Practical Logic

  • From: "Torgeir Fjeld" <phatic@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Tue, 25 Dec 2007 16:40:11 +0100

It may be that Bourdieu using the term 'practical logic' to address was what he 
elsewhere termed the modus operandi of practitioners in a field. Bourdieu's 
point is often that in order to understand how a field works the researcher 
needs to take stock of the limited number of available positions in that field 
and their range of possible operations. With such an approach it may be 
possible to put together an account of the practical (as opposed to apriori 
analytical) operations of a field. This account could then be assembled from 
within the field rather than from above or without -- it is participatory 
rather than the product of observation from behind a one-way mirror. The 
advantage of this kind of approach is that it may be possible to account for 
operations that appear contradictory or self-defeating when utilizing the 
analytical method. 

Best regards,
Torgeir Fjeld
Oslo, Norway

> ----- Original Message -----
> From: palma@xxxxxxxx
> To: "joerg benesch" <andreas@xxxxxxxxxxx>, "Donal McEvoy" 
> <donalmcevoyuk@xxxxxxxxxxx>, "Eric Yost" <mr.eric.yost@xxxxxxxxx>, 
> jls@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx, Jlsperanza@xxxxxxx, "joerg benesch" <jgruel@xxxxxxxxxx>, 
> "John McCreery" <john.mccreery@xxxxxxxxx>, "John Wager" 
> <john.wager1@xxxxxxxxxxx>, "Lawrence Helm" <lawrencehelm@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>, 
> lit-ideas-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx, lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx, "Paul Stone" 
> <pastone@xxxxxxxxx>, "Robert Paul" <rpaul@xxxxxxxx>, "Ursula Stange" 
> <Ursula@xxxxxxxxxx>, wokshevs@xxxxxx, lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
> Subject: [lit-ideas] Re: Persuasion Redux
> Date: Sun, 23 Dec 2007 22:03:51 -0500 (EST)
> This is indeed an interesting point. What people (such as Bourdieu) call
> logic has nothing to do with logic.
> The situation is quite similar to the difference between the notions of
> "physical" in a bar brawl and the notion of physical that is used in
> physics. Logically speaking of course the following is valid:
> "since my parent were elephants, and I am the offspring of my parents, I
> am an elephant"
> this is a valid argument, anyone whoi listens to it deems it amken "no
> logical sense" -
> i hav etried on roughly two dozens people of different background. They
> simply balk at the notion that I even *could* be an elephant
> (for the reconrd both of my parents, blessed their memories, were
> standard size humans, not large mammals with huge ears)
> What Bourdieu calls logic is simply is musings of what he atkes to be
> "practice".: translation, not a theory fo anything but a long tale with
> no empirical import.
> (for our friends more popperian than Sir Karl, try if you wish, to come
> up with anything that could falsify Bourdieu's views)
> to all of you a  very happy new yearOn Sun, 23 Dec 2007,
> p.w. if anyone is perplexed, the principles used in the arguments are
> standard quantificationsl logic (of the 1st order, in this case even
> translatable in classical syllgostic Aristotelian systems) and the
> empiricallyu, rather established, principle that sexual union among
> elephants brings about new elephants (from Darwinian discoveries about
> species, if not Mendelian)
> John McCreery wrote:
> > On Dec 23, 2007 2:52 PM, Robert Paul <rpaul@xxxxxxxx> wrote:
> >
> > >
> > > I mention this because in one context, formal logic, the distinction
> > > between truth and validity is strict: arguments are neither true nor
> > > false, and propositions are neither valid nor invalid. Yet here's John,
> > > assigning a lack of validity to an assumption. But of course we
> > > understand him. Context is all, as someone said earlier (Phil? Eric?),
> > > and in this context (class dismissed) we might even let someone get away
> > > with saying that an argument was true.
> >
> >
> > My thanks to Robert Paul for reminding us of this genuinely useful
> > distinction, between formal logic and other contexts. The sense of "valid"
> > to which I pointed is more statistical than logical, and has more to do with
> > the relation of a representation to the world than to the relation of steps
> > in a fully formalized game to each other, i.e., the relation of the map to
> > the territory instead of whether the map is properly drawn by the rules of
> > one or another cartographic system.
> >
> > But again I slip into metaphor. I wonder if we could get this or another of
> > our eminent professors to elaborate a bit on the relation of "logic" as used
> > by analytical philosophers (e.g., in the title of W. V. Quine's
> > _Mathematical Logic_) and logic as used by continental philosophers and
> > their academic colleagues (e.g., in the title of Pierre Bourdieu's_The Logic
> > of Practice_).
> >
> > John
> > --
> > John McCreery
> > The Word Works, Ltd., Yokohama, JAPAN
> > Tel. +81-45-314-9324
> > http://www.wordworks.jp/
> >
> off address: #201 West Building, Philosophy, Duke University
> box 90743, Durham, NC 27708
> home ph#: [1] 9196881856
> cellph#: [1[] 9195997065 (voicemail is available on said numbers)
> email palma@xxxxxxxx
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