The Established and the Delegated: The Division of Labour of Domination among Effective Agents on the Field of Power in Denmark

Jacob Aagaard Lunding, Christoph Houman Ellersgaard*, Anton Grau Larsen

*Corresponding author for this work

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What is the relationship between the various forms of power held by elites in contemporary society? Using Bourdieu’s notion of the field of power, we address this question by exploring the division of labour of domination among contemporary Danish elites. Via a specific multiple correspondence analysis of 44 variables with 198 categories, we examine the relationship between the volume and distribution of various forms of capital held by 423 individuals at the core of Danish elite networks, arguing that they constitute effective agents in the field of power. We find three major differentiations between: (1) established and newcomers; (2) public and private forms of legitimation; and (3) rural or industrial-based, but nonetheless organisationally well connected, elites and the social elite surrounding Copenhagen state nobility. The legitimising pole of the field of power does not necessarily derive its positions from the cultural field but can also rely on delegated forms of capital.
Original languageEnglish
Issue number1
Pages (from-to)110-128
Number of pages19
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2021

Bibliographical note

Published online: June 19, 2020


  • Capital
  • Elites
  • Power

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