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ERIC Number: ED524956
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 296
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 0
ISBN: ISBN-978-1-1244-3716-3
The Cultural Reproduction of Architecture: Examining the Roles of Cultural Capital and Organizational Habitus in the Socialization of Architectural Education
Chamberlin, Jennifer L.
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, University of Michigan
Compared to other professions in recent years, architecture has lagged woefully behind in attracting and retaining a diverse population, as typically defined by class, race and gender. This dissertation investigates the extent to which architecture culturally reproduces itself, specifically examining the socialization process of students into the subculture of architecture during formal education. The work of French sociologist and anthropologist, Pierre Bourdieu, who has written extensively on the subject of socialization in education, serves as a theoretical framework for this research. Specifically, two factors are examined in this study: a student's level of cultural capital and the organizational habitus of the architecture program, which includes elements of the hidden curriculum. Using a comparative case study research strategy of two U.S. schools of architecture, both quantitative and qualitative tactics are employed to provide a rich description of architecture students' and faculties' experiences. Building upon cultural reproduction and cultural mobility theories, findings from this dissertation present a more nuanced understanding of students' backgrounds, beyond the typical dichotomous definition of high vs. low cultural capital. A third group (Cluster 1) emerged through K-Means cluster analysis, which had relatively high levels of parental education but relatively low levels of cultural participation. Cluster 1 is of particular interest because they expressed the most disappointments and least satisfaction with their educations on both quantitative and qualitative measures at each case study site. Furthermore, when other defining student characteristics were considered, including gender, program type, race and ethnicity, particular subgroups of each school's Cluster 1 emerged as most dissatisfied (specifically male undergraduate International students at School A and white male undergraduate students at School B), indicating a complex interaction of these descriptive student characteristics with students' levels of cultural capital. These students' experiences were interpreted in terms of a clash of values with those of their architectural program. Recommendations are made for architectural education to widen the presently narrow scope of their curriculum by meaningfully incorporating issues of social engagement that this research identified as most lacking ("Environmentally responsible design," "Professional Practice," "Community Design Work"), to attract and engage a broader range of student. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
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Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A