What is it about?

The philosophical tools of French thinker, Pierre Bourdieu, are used to examine the life story of Mary Sumner and her activities and achievements within the Anglican Church.

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Why is it important?

Women's access to power has been limited. In using Bourdieu's terminology, Sumner's life is an example of how in sociological terms, an agent played within a field defined by her habitus and gained significant capital while adhering to the doxa.


In learning about how a woman rose to power in the Anglican Church, the reader experiences how sociological tools of analysis are applied. It is a great introduction to both historical figures.

Johari Murray
Universidad Nacional de Educacion a Distancia

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This page is a summary of: Mary Sumner: mission, education and motherhood: thinking a life with Bourdieu, Paedagogica Historica, July 2019, Taylor & Francis, DOI: 10.1080/00309230.2019.1637443.
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