Putting a Glitch in the Field

Bourdieu, Actor Network Theory and Contemporary Music

Bourdieu’s cultural sociology has become increasingly attractive to sociologists of music looking to account for the complex interrelations between industry, institution and practice. There remains, however, a tendency in such work to reduce the complexity and scope of Bourdieu’s ideas. Th is paper attempts to apply Bourdieu’s field theory to music, but does so with a critical orientation. The focus of the paper is the finde millénaire music style called glitch, a style characterized by sonic fragments of technological error. While we learn a lot about the social trajectories of glitch from greater sensitization to its position in a structured setting of socio-economic relations, it becomes difficult to account for the centrality of technological mediators to this contemporary style of music using Bourdieu’s categories alone. The paper pursues the possibility of supplementing or combining a Bourdieusian approach with actor network theory.

Released: Replika 78, 27–44.
Ágoston Fáber