Reproduction of Social Inequality Through the Perspective of Pierre Bourdieu’s SchoolsBy Haryatmoko
Sue suggestive title of this article is actually wanted to capture the idea of Pierre Bourdieu on school education. In the year nineteen sixties, education and schools tend to still be a matter of the pedagogue or psychologist. So it is not surprising that efforts to overcome the problem of education has always sought the solution in the vicinity of the teaching-learning process, the level of success or failure on the basis of evaluation of the ability to absorb the material being taught, the situation psychology students or faculty, educational facilities, curriculum, the relationship between the objectives of education and choice of means of pedagogical teaching-learning process. All of these problems rests on the pre-assumption that all learners have equal opportunities. The success of education refers only to the two major criteria, namely the teaching-learning process and the results will be measured by the competence of the profession. While the social background of students was not taken into account.
When the criteria used refers to the demands of professional competence, it would appear that the high unemployment caused many college graduates are not ready or do not have the skills demanded the labor market. And much more pathetic is the weak reading skills of learners and even those already in college. The ideals of education that the acquisition of knowledge and technology will encourage a sense of self and the environment better, it was difficult to realize. Not only at the college level, the problem of lack of competence burst, already at the level of primary and secondary education is perceived problem.
The rise of tutoring and courses as a requirement to get into the next level. The situation is, on the one hand, shows the weakness of education systems because of inadequate briefing. Materials and methods are not adequate means of learning so that learners still need to take additional courses. On the other hand, excessive demands of the material is often a source of frustration for being the cause of the dense curriculum so as to give the impression that the education system does not have priority and are weak in goal orientation. Berjubelnya number of learners in a class play a role in communication pedagogy lack creativity because it limits the possibility of applying various methods of teaching and learning.
When the acquisition of knowledge and basic skills (reading, speaking series, counting and problem-solving) has experienced many obstacles, especially the basic learning (knowledge, skills, values and attitudes) that are required in order to develop its capabilities, a dignified life and work became increasingly not easy (J. Delors, 1996:25). Not to mention if you have to face the demands to be able to effectively use modern media, demands so as not to lose in the competition. This demand continues to open up our education system weaknesses. Yet effective use of media contribute to personal and intellectual development and independence of learners. The three demands that determine the development of skills each student is expected to be increasingly effective role in the family, as citizens or productive members of society be realized only in a minority of learners. These facts seemed to justify criticism of Pierre Bourdieu who stated that the school only to institutions of social reproduction of inequality (1970). Upper middle class better off by the school system because school culture is more in accordance with their habitus.And their children are more ready to enter the competition from those who come from the poor.
The tension between the need for competition, on the one hand, and concern for equal opportunity, on the other hand, putting the education policy makers in a dilemma. Competition is needed to spur efficiency (typical economic logic), while the equalization of opportunities and solidarity is emphasized by the social logic.Tension is to be solved through education to establish synergies between efficiency spur competition, which gives the power of cooperation and solidarity that unites (J. Delors, 1996: 17-18).However, the synthesis effort proved difficult because of too dominant economic structure of meaning which emphasizes competition. The myth of liberalism education that all have the same opportunity to compete more and maintained. So the approach will tend to focus on pedagogy, psychology, curriculum and underestimated the problems of sociology of education, especially the relationship between education and society.
Pierre Bourdieu with his work with Jean-Claude Passeron heritiers Les (1964) break the ice with a focus on the sociological approach to education and schools. According to Bourdieu, social inequalities in education felt once when he saw an opportunity to go to college for students who come from upper-class probability of 80%, while those coming from the peasants and workers only 40% (Bourdieu & Passeron, 1964:12). Schools are considered an active role in producing and reproducing social inequality.Bourdieu wants to build a theory of social relations within the framework of cultural wealth, the delivery of cultural heritage, engineering created and how the appropriation of these cultural treasures. Gaps in the school reflects the principles of the gaps in culture. Bourdieu, especially with the concept of habitus, enriching the relationship of social classes by including the cultural dimension, symbolic, moral, psychological and ketubuhan. Habitus is the result of the skills into practical action (not necessarily conscious), which then translates into an ability that seems natural and developed in certain social environments (P. Bourdieu, 1994: 9, 16-17). In the process of skill acquisition that the structures that formed turned into structures that form.
The concept of habitus is by no means approve of determinism that imprisons the actions within the framework of the outer boundary or social structures of individual menkondisikan become self-reliant and rational. Although independent and rational human being, ideas or thoughts do not escape from a burning vision of a world in a particular social position. One’s skills in answering the challenge is conditioned by its environment and is influenced by the routine actions. However, customs and keterempilan it to function like a program that has the creative capabilities and strategic reach in a particular environment. So even though there are deterministic factors that burden the representations of the learner, the concept of habitus also take into account the creative and strategic capabilities. So do not deny the possibility that learners from poor neighborhoods can succeed in learning. They were able to overcome the limitations of their social environment.However, what percentage of the amount that can be enjoyed such success? Toil and sacrifice what kind of success is relatively low menertai it? The success rate was low enough to envelop the social selection mechanism through the school and spread as if each student has equal opportunity. Social selection mechanism through school and was never questioned again. In this way, he distinguishes himself from the Marxian model of class approach as well as individual and everyday into account in social analysis.
In more technical, Bourdieu studied the impact of this cultural gap of communication pedagogisnya. This approach focuses more on the education system as a source of social inequality was found in his work with also Passeron, La Reproduction (1970). Social inequalities faced by school, first of all not a problem of income differences, but rather on differences in cultural capital. So there is a correlation between success in school with family assistance and supervision of learners, parents’ education level, then the effect of economic capital. Two works that have become classics, but still relevant enough to observe the school education system in Indonesia. With its distinctive way, a sociologist who is studying philosophy before plunging into this sociology, mendemistifikasi role of schools and dismantle unfair dominance relationships in the school system. It does not stop with unpacking, he proposes concrete solutions.
School and Social MobilitySchools relied upon as an effective place to climb the social ladder. Through the school hopes will improve the lives of people both economically, culturally and position in the social hierarchy.French republican imagination to develop a picture of social mobility in three generations: grandfather farmer, parents teachers, children become intellectually (writer), corporate leaders or officials. The example often cited is that of Georges Pompidou, President of France, grandson of a farmer and son of a teacher from the village of Cantal (C. Baudelot, 2006:165).
In the minds of the public schools as equal opportunities for all layers. Though the school culture requires a certain condition if you want to get a place of honor at prestigious universities. Everyday pedagogical practices of teachers at all levels of education and family behaviors that hamper the readiness of students from lower-class culture determines the type of relationship the school and family culture.
Culture social classes are better prepared to face competition in the school is upper middle class culture. In families of this social group existing reading habits; they have a dictionary or encyclopedia, there is space and time to learn, already have a computer, there are so skilled in the habit of discussing in engineering language. In short, although the school equal opportunities for all, but in reality, upper middle class had already booked the best places because of their readiness to compete. In other words, class habitus that can be developed and grew not out of ownership of cultural capital and economic capital.
Since I was in elementary school, students are encouraged to excel so it can fit in the rankings in the class. Early on they began to race to compete for a place at every level of the education process by promising social position in the future. So the hunt was a favorite haunt school parents. Institutions that offer tutoring to prep school or university mushroomed favorite. The courses and private lessons for English, Mathematics, Physics or Chemistry erupted. Widening social gap with the proliferation of International Schools which pedagogisnya communication using English. But it would be absurd prohibit the institutions and alternative programs such activities. Institutions and activities that emerged was an attempt to cover up deficiencies or other forms of dissatisfaction with the existing education system.
These symptoms are merely an indication that the education system in Indonesia, there was something wrong. Education authorities should also managed to improve the educational system because of the many complaints that the results are not ready to be thrown into the job market, let alone compete in an international level. Indeed, the purpose of education not only provides knowledge and skills only to meet the needs of the labor market. But this pragmatic educational goals are very reasonable as a survival instinct or the tendency for the improvement of quality of life, if not to say that major. There are at least four goals that the idealism of education: 1) the acquisition of knowledge and skills (competence) or the ability to answer the market demand, 2) the humanistic orientation, 3) answer the challenges of social, economic and justice issues, 4) the progress of science itself .
The four educational goals that have similar pre-assumption, namely that all learners have equal opportunities. Focusing instead of pre-starting this incorrect assumption, Bourdieu saw with jelly unjust domination: the economically elite class usually already have established cultural capital that is more ready to compete to get the best place in college. Usually that despite the attention of education policy makers is that the school system created the myth all have the same opportunity.
School Myth: All Have The Same OpportunityThe work of Bourdieu need to be understood in the context of education in France. According to Christian Baudelot, since 1962 is available results of research on the education system, created under the leadership of Alain Girard and Roger Bastide, who take into account the level of school trips (2006:166). Donations study helped develop a sociological analysis because it gives a very rich data for those who wish to study the role of schools in the community, especially its role in social mobility.
The study provides a systematic synthesis of various fundamental variables such as age, gender, parental employment, income level, as long learners. These data, after connecting with no problem the next grade, the ethos of learning, success in school, the orientation mechanism, enabling it to see one of the functions of school: success or failure in climbing the ladder of education indicate a process of social selection and social elimination (2006:166).Although the numbers are small in the early levels of schooling, ability and weight of students who come from upper class more often above average. The higher levels of schooling increased ability to compete more and they thus further reducing and beat students from lower-class, the son of peasants, workers, low-ranking employees [76% of upper grade students rated advanced, while 64% of the lower classes is considered late (Bourdieu,1964:13)]. Studies showing a system of social selection from the beginning.
In Indonesia, the proliferation of expensive International Schools and hunting beayanya favorite schools provide evidence that the person has approved the selection system of society from an early age. Is it true all learners have equal opportunities? Ideology talent increasingly perpetuate the myth that all have the same opportunity.Is not social origin of students into the most decisive factor in the success or failure in school? According to Bourdieu, even for the upper class, a sense of security about the future is more assured with the opening of the possibility to take courses in several disciplines that are often far from the main disciplines studied (1964:29).There is a relationship between, on one hand the school, which is understood as an institution of cultural reproduction in force, and, on the other hand, social classes are characterized by the ability to effectively absorb the pedagogical communication (Bourdieu, 1970:128). Apparently grouping of social classes also reflect the distance gap with the school culture. The tradition of living in upper middle class more closely with the school culture. So the tendency of the ability to absorb the pedagogical communication at the school in social class groups are more easily and effectively than students who come from lower class.
There are several factors that maintain the myth of equal opportunity. Representation of the success stories of a small portion popular classes have been misleading to display two or three figures who succeeded, despite coming from poor families or rural farmers. The story would make sure that thanks to the perseverance, they were able to pursue every level of education to successfully occupy a certain position. People no longer ask what percentage of the number who come from poor families or rural farmers can succeed like that. Not to mention when asked with what kind of sacrifice they made. After graduating college, to find employment, social relations also determine, let alone an established position. And poor families are usually weak in this social capital.
Such representation would assure though thanks to the talent and perseverance, all students have equal opportunity to succeed.Though the origins of the social environment is crucial. Learners who come from poor families or farmers in the village has struggled to pursue steps away from school because of educational and cultural facilities. Unlike those who since childhood has been no stranger to books, computers, visits to the library, magazine or newspaper subscriptions, though discussions where thoughts become the main activity, then writing and speaking has become part of life. Become familiar with the environment in which the clever language to mother tongue, they are qualified to use the words and thinking are more sharply honed (P. Bourdieu, 1964). The habit of reading and learning because it has become a family tradition facilitate learners of a particular social environment ahead of the competition. From here emerged the ideology of talent, as if learner ability and superiority is innate talent. Though success thanks to the disposition, the result of skill and conditioning, then become part of practical consciousness, and then revealed in a seemingly natural ability, can develop because of certain social environments (habitus according to P. Bourdieu, Le sens pratique, 1980).
Early Social SelectionThe concept of habitus is by no means approve of determinism which imprison human acts within the framework of the outer limiting or conditioning the social structure, as if the individual is not autonomous and rational. Indeed, although independent and rational human being, but the ideas or thoughts do not escape from a vision of a world that is rooted in a particular social position.One’s skills in answering the challenge is conditioned by its environment and is influenced by the routine actions. But the habits and skills that serves as a program that has the creative capabilities and strategic reach in a particular environment. So although there are factors that burden the determinism of representations of learners, the concept of habitus also take into account the creative and strategic capabilities. So do not deny students from poor neighborhoods can prove successful. They are not imprisoned by the limitations of the social environment and able to cope.
The problem is how many percent the number who could enjoy such success. Labor-what kind of effort and sacrifice must accompany success was relatively low. And misleading, when the low success rate was just enough to envelop the social selection mechanism through school. Then the myth that every learner has a chance at the life and believed. Social selection mechanism through the school was never questioned again because seems like a natural, although it only benefits the adequacy circles. He became a means of maintaining social positions or means of domination of a particular social group. Selection mechanism is sharpened by the tendency to differ in their tastes and choices of cultural activities of what is consumed, used and owned.Selection system that has been going on since early that already underlies the principle of reproduction of social inequality. Gaps school success of students is determined by social class origin.The productivity level of effort depends on the habitus family pedagogy, especially in terms of language acquisition (1970:89-90). So there is a relationship between previous attempts in the mastery of native languages with a success rate of students in school.Language is not just a communication tool, but to arm other than a rich repertoire, as well as category system, the ability of explanation and manipulation with a complex structure, logical or aesthetic, partly depending on the wealth of languages taught by the family (Bourdieu & Passeron, 1970:92, 96 .) This statement will be very visible, especially the first years of college in junior college.The use of language in education level has become the principal point of application in the assessment of the lecturers. Apparently, according to Bourdieu and Passeron observations, there is a relationship between language ability and social class origin. The ability to systematically explain all the variations of language competence depends on the social class origins. Upper class that has a great cultural capital has a higher success rate in the study compared with those from the popular classes. But in the field of exact sciences apparently success can not be directly linked to social class origins of students. This may be due to the demands of language skills do not become the main pressure (Bourdieu & Passeron, 1964:19).