Encyclopedia of Teacher Education

Living Edition
| Editors: Michael A. Peters

Chinese Rural Teachers in the Structure Network, Social Status of

  • Yong-gui DongEmail author
  • Xiang-yuan Kong
  • Cheng-long Wang
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-981-13-1179-6_3-1


Reacting to the relationship between individual and social structure, there has been a long-standing dualistic division between structural constraints and agency in the history of sociology of education. Structuralism such as Bourdieu (1997) held that social structure was an objective existence external to individuals, which greatly limited the action of social members. The structure-oriented approach underestimated the influence of individuals. Some critical educational sociologists, such as Erving Goffman (1959), took agency as its premise, subscribing to the constructive function of individual and society. In order to resolve the abovementioned dualistic opposition, Anthony Giddens (1979) proposed the theory of structural duality. He believed that only the actor had the ability to perceive the rules or properties of social structure and the ability to practice, and he was able to get rid of the limitation of social structure by innovative action.

As the change of social...

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yong-gui Dong
    • 1
    Email author
  • Xiang-yuan Kong
    • 2
  • Cheng-long Wang
    • 3
  1. 1.School of EducationZhengzhou UniversityZhengzhouChina
  2. 2.Normal CollegeShenzhen UniversityShenzhenChina
  3. 3.Training DepartmentNational Academy of Education AdministrationBeijingChina

Section editors and affiliations

  • Tien-hui Chiang
    • 1
  1. 1.Academy of Globalization and Education PolicySchool of Education, Zhengzhou UniversityZhengzhouChina