According to abbreviationfinder, Doxa is a term that is not part of the dictionary of the Royal Spanish Academy (RAE). The concept, from the Greek, refers to an opinion or a point of view.
In the field of philosophy, doxa is understood as knowledge that does not provide absolute certainty. Doxa, therefore, is apparent knowledge and not objective data. In other words: doxa does not constitute a true knowledge of reality.
Doxa can be associated with opinion.
It is important to point out that the original term, in Greek, can be translated as “fame or glory”, although in this context it is understood as “opinion”, and that is why we speak of a knowledge that is not always true but revolves around the reality because of its overcrowding.
Before continuing, we must also explain the concept of habitus. In general, the term habit is defined as the acquired predisposition that gives us a daily activity, or act in a certain way. It is said that “ behavior determines habit”, precisely because when we repeat it very often, it becomes habitual. But if we internalize behavior, then the scheme is reversed, since “habit determines behavior.”
The word habitus, therefore, can be likened to custom, understood as the repetitive practice that tends to become fixed as a result of its frequency.
It can serve you: Fame
Doxa according to the Greek philosophers
Several Greek philosophers focused on the issue of doxa. Parmenides used the notion to refer to the “way of opinion”, different from the “way of truth”. Plato, for his part, considered doxa to be delusional knowledge developed from imagination and faith. In this way he was opposed to the episteme, a knowledge that could be justified as truth.
It can be said that the doxa is linked to a point of view, which does not constitute an accurate knowledge.
Following the Platonic philosophy, the doxa would be an opinion (sensible knowledge) product of the imagination and beliefs. The episteme, on the other hand, appears as science (intelligible knowledge) created by intuition and reasoning. That is why episteme approaches true knowledge, something that doxa cannot achieve.
Plato called doxophores those individuals who sought to ascend socially and profit through false knowledge. The doxa of these subjects only appeared to be knowledge, but it was not real knowledge.
The French sociologist Pierre Bourdieu, for his part, used the idea of doxa in the framework of his field theory. For Bourdieu, a field is a network of social relations that develops in a space of action. The doxa, in this context, are the motivations or ideologies that are presented as inherent to an activity and, therefore, are not subject to questioning.
In Bourdieu’s theory, doxa is defined as those schemes of daily life that are considered natural and, therefore, are not questioned but accepted as they are. Doxa is, in other words, the collective habitus that becomes predominant in a given society and time, and that does not require reflection.
Continuing with the concept of doxa, Bourdieu considers it the thoughtless sustenance of the actions of the subjects who live in society. Doxa can go through changes, the speed of which is closely linked to the kind of society in which it is contextualized: in a conservative one it tends towards statism, while in a permeable one it will change easily.
Doxa changes take place between two periods, but they are linked to milestones, those events of a historical nature that mark society and can effectively alter its doxa, even in a negative way (among the most common examples are coups d’état, periods of repression and wars).