Social Closures: Reconfiguration of Professional Work in the Danish State School
The interconnectedness between the formation of a professional group and its specific tasks and competencies is at the core of sociological theories of professions. In neo-Weberian approaches to social closure, the shaping and maintenance of professional groups have been conceptualised as state-sanctioned efforts to gain control over a specific task area. However, whereas legally sanctioned monopolies have been subject to certain attention, the social dynamics of processes of professional closure in everyday work practices seem relatively unexplored. This article demonstrates how social closure can be analysed as interrelated processes, covering legal as well as practical, symbolic elements. Drawing on the case of the 2014 Danish School Reform and its introduction of a new professional group in Danish schools, “pedagogues”, the article sheds light on the interplay between a state-driven reconfiguration of a task area and the subtle dynamics of symbolic struggles between the two professions teachers and pedagogues.
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Copyright (c) 2022 Marianne Brodersen
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