From Symbolic Violence to Economic Violence: The Globalizing of the Scottish Banking Elite

  • Kerr R
  • Robinson S
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Abstract

The financial crisis has raised questions about the role of corporate elites in contemporary organizations. This article follows recent work on organizational elites that argues for critical sociological approaches to the study of such elites, using, for example, Bourdieu's concept of field, and for studies of elites in contexts outside North America. Applying Bourdieusian concepts such as forms of violence, we look at the particular case of the Scottish banking elite, focusing on changing enactments of violence within that field, from symbolic violence to economic violence. We trace the movement of the Scottish banking elite from the national-traditional to the global and modernized and demonstrate how members of an elite field can operate in the field of power within their own organization and at the same time within a transorganizational field of peer competitors, thus illustrating how a specific national elite has been affected by neoliberal globalization and its crisis. [PUBLICATION ABSTRACT]

Author-supplied keywords

  • Scottish banks
  • economic violence
  • elites
  • field
  • forms of capital
  • symbolic violence

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Authors

  • Ron Kerr

  • Sarah Robinson

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