“Coal [from Colombia] is our life”. Bourdieu, the miners (after they are miners) and resistance in As Pontes.
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We address the question why social identities associated with resource extraction can survive the extraction itself, a question which is highly relevant for devising strategies for economic diversification and community reinvention in many communities. The case of As Pontes, in Galicia, Spain, where a rural community transformed into a power house of coal mining and electricity production, as part of state-led development schemes, is highly instructive, as it reveals the importance of state planning and a central actor which structured social, political and economic life, and created identities which could not easily be dislodged. We deploy notions from Pierre Bourdieu’s sociology of practice to analyze the persistence of identities and associated hopes for an impossible return to the past, giving central place to the idea of symbolic violence, i.e. the internalization of categories, identities and relations initially promoted by a coalition of actors benefiting from this order of the social field.
|Number of pages||11|
|Publication status||Published - 2021|