Picturing Algeria by Pierre BourdieuPicturing Algeria by Pierre Bourdieu

Picturing Algeria

byPierre Bourdieu

Paperback | August 12, 2014

Pricing and Purchase Info


Earn 204 plum® points

Prices and offers may vary in store


In stock online

Ships free on orders over $25

Not available in stores


As a soldier in the French army, Pierre Bourdieu took thousands of photographs documenting the abject conditions and suffering (as well as the resourcefulness, determination, grace, and dignity) of the Algerian people as they fought in the Algerian War (1954-1962). Sympathizing with those he was told to regard as "enemies," Bourdieu became deeply and permanently invested in their struggle to overthrow French rule and the debilitations of poverty.

Upon realizing the inability of his education to make sense of this wartime reality, Bourdieu immediately undertook the creation of a new ethnographic-sociological science based on his experiences-one that became synonymous with his work over the next few decades and was capable of explaining the mechanics of French colonial aggression and the impressive, if curious, ability of the Algerians to resist it.

This volume pairs 130 of Bourdieu's photographs with key excerpts from his related writings, very few of which have been translated into English. Many of these images, luminous aesthetic objects in their own right, comment eloquently on the accompanying words even as they are commented upon by them. Bourdieu's work set the standard for all subsequent ethnographic photography and critique. This volume also features a 2001 interview with Bourdieu, in which he speaks to his experiences in Algeria, its significance on his intellectual evolution, his role in transforming photography into a means for social inquiry, and the duty of the committed intellectual to participate in an increasingly troubled world.

Pierre Bourdieu (1930-2002) is widely regarded as one of the most important French intellectuals of the twentieth century. He served as chair of sociology at the College de France and authored numerous seminal works, including The Social Structures of the Economy; The Weight of the World: Social Suffering in Contemporary Society; The ...
Title:Picturing AlgeriaFormat:PaperbackDimensions:248 pagesPublished:August 12, 2014Publisher:Columbia University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0231148437

ISBN - 13:9780231148436

Look for similar items by category:


Read from the Book

Read an >interview with Pierre Bourdieu and view photographs from Picturing Algeria.

Table of Contents

Foreword, by Craig Calhoun Pierre Bourdieu and Algeria: An Elective Affinity, by Franz SchultheisPictures from Algeria: An Interview with Pierre Bourdieu, by Franz SchultheisWar and Social Transformation in Algeria Habitus and HabitatMen-WomenAn Agrarian Society in CrisisThe Economics of PovertyIn Algiers and Blida: Image Sequence, by Pierre BourdieuComments on the Photographic Documentations of Pierre Bourdieu, by Christine FrisinghelliWorks by Pierre Bourdieu on AlgeriaList of PhotographsNotes

Editorial Reviews

Picturing Algeria is worth its price for the 130 images alone... An invaluable contribution to scholarship. The photographs offer a rare glimpse into an unfamiliar aspect of Bourdieu's work in Algeria, displaying the literal lenses through which he framed his research sites.