The sociology of culture


This class aims to introduce students to the sociology of culture (predominantly French) by placing emphasis on the specificity of the sociological approach to culture. For this purpose, we will pay particular attention to several points: We will present Bourdieu's dominant theory and analyze it in detail before discussing it by referring to various authors (Donnat, Lahire, Heinich, Passeron, Boltanski, etc.).  We will then examine alternative theoretical currents (H. Becker's interactionism or  P-M Menger's social economy of culture); We will present the sociology of cultural practices, by focusing this time on the methodological dimension (quantitative versus qualitative approaches); Finally, we will discuss the sociology of cultural occupations and all the questions it raises. We will conclude the class by presenting major sociological issues and challenges facing this field (integration/exclusion, rationalization, identity, conflicts, specialization, etc.).

Form of assessment

The number of ECTS credits and the assessment methods are likely to be different for students in credit exchange programmes.


  • Béra et Lamy, Sociologie de la culture, 2003, 3e éd. 2011.
  • Coulangeon, Sociologie des pratiques culturelles, 2005.
  • Détrez, Sociologie de la culture, 2014.
  • Heinich, Sociologie de l'art, 2004.
  • Fleury, Sociologie de la culture et des pratiques culturelles, 2006.

Educational formula

Lecture. Distribution of documents (statistics, diagrams). Possible cultural press reviews by students (10 minutes) leading to discussion on an aspect of the sociology of culture.

In brief

Year Fourth year

Teaching languageFrench

Teaching term Six-monthly

ECTS credits 3.0

Number of hours 18.0

Teaching activityLecture course

ValidationFinal written examination

Mandatory teaching

Open to exchange students



Educational manager :
Béra Matthieu [+]