A Dynamic Model of Cultural Reproduction
The authors draw on Pierre Bourdieu’s theory of cultural reproduction to develop a formal model of the pathways through which cultural capital acts to enhance children’s educational and socioeconomic success. The authors’ approach brings conceptual and empirical clarity to an important area of study. Their model describes how parents transmit cultural capital to their children and how children convert cultural capital into educational success. It also provides a behavioral framework for interpreting parental investments in cultural capital. The authors review results from existing empirical research on the role of cultural capital in education to demonstrate the usefulness of their model for interpretative purposes, and they use National Longitudinal Survey of Youth 1979—Children and Young Adults survey data to test some of its implications.