Saturday, October 06, 2018

Quote of the (Kavanaugh) Day

Pierre Bourdieu, The Force of Law (1987) --

When combined with the specific effects of professional training, such a background helps to explain that the magistracy's declared neutrality and its haughty independence from politics by no means exclude a commitment to the established order. The effects of such unanimous tacit complicity become most visible in the course of an economic and social crisis within the professional body itself. Such a crisis arises, for example, in an alteration of the mode by which the holders of dominant positions are selected. At such a moment, professional complicity of the sort just discussed collapses. Certain newcomers to the magistracy, by virtue of their position or personal attitudes, are not inclined to accept the traditional presuppositions defining the magistracy. The struggles they undertake bring to light a largely repressed element at the heart of the group's foundation: the nonaggression pact that links the magistracy to dominant power. To this point the professional body is held together in and by a universally accepted hierarchy and consensus concerning its role. But increasing internal differentiation leads to the body's becoming a locus of struggle. This causes some members to repudiate the professional pact and to openly attack those who continue to consider it the inviolable norm of their professional activity.

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