Ass. Prof. Dr. Marta Bucholc

University of Warsaw

Marta BucholcMarta BucholcMarta Bucholc


Curriculum Vitae

Before obtaining her doctorate degree in Warsaw in 2006, Marta Bucholc completed not only a Master's Degree in Sociology (Warsaw, 2000), but also a Master's Degree in Philosophy (Warsaw, 2003), a Master of Laws Degree (Warsaw, 2004) as well as a D.E.S.S. au Droit de Societés (Poitiers, 2004). Since 2006, she is Assistant Professor for Sociology at the University of Warsaw. Dr. Bucholc's research has received numerous awards and stipends, including the Florian Znaniecki Awards of the Polish Sociological Association, the START Fellowship at the Foundation for Polish Science as well as the Bronisław Geremek Fellowship from the Institute for Human Sciences in Vienna, where she was Junior Visiting Fellow from 2010 to 2011.
Her research project "Involvement and Detachement in Legal Concepts and Practices - On the potential of Norbert Elias' approach in the global comparative research of legal cultures", which is the focus of her stay at the Käte Hamburger Center for Advanced Study in the Humanities “Law as Culture”, fits in thematically with a larger research project on Elias' Sociology of Knowledge. Furthermore, she is working on the project "Wyjść poza język. Weber i Wittgenstein o polityce i nauce" (Beyond the language. Weber and Wittgenstein on politics and science) as parrt of the Bronisław Geremek Fellowships.
Marta Bucholc further translates sociological writings. In 2008, for instance, she translated Michel Maffesoli's work "Le temps des tribus. Le déclin de l'individualisme dans les sociétés postmodernes" (1988) to Polish and is currently translating Norbert Elias' "Die höfische Gesellschaft". From October 2012 until September 2013, Marta Bucholc was Fellow at the Käte Hamburger Center for Advanced Study in the Humanities “Law as Culture”.

Research Project

Involvement and Detachment in Legal Concepts and Practices.
On the potential of Norbert Elias's approach in the global comparative research of legal cultures

The aim of my research proposal for the academic year 2012/13 at the Käte Hamburger Kolleg "Recht als Kultur" is remedying the drawbacks of conducting comparative research of legal cultures in the globalized world. I argue that the principal source of difficulty in this field is the limited applicability of theories of culture based on an assumed existence of a clearly delimited society. I name a score of phenomena demonstrating that globalization leads to an emergence of new actors, new areas and new processes of creating and transforming legal cultures. All of these exceed the boundaries of any single society, thus calling for a new heuristic, which I propose to construe based on Norbert Elias's categories of involvement and detachment. I claim that a model based on these two notions may be successfully used in comparative analysis of legal cultures by way of avoiding both the plight of ethnocentrism and the blind alley of radical culturalism.

Selected Publications

  • Samotnosc dlugodystansowca. Na marginesach socjologii procesow spolecznych (The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner. On the Margins of Social Process Sociology (forthcoming).
  • Konserwatywna utopia kapitalizmu. Etyczne iluzje międzywojennego kupiectwa (Conservative utopia of capitalism. Ethical illusions of interwar merchants), Warsaw: Wydawnictwo Naukowe PWN 2012.
  • Gendered figurational strategies, in: Polish Sociological Review, No. 4 (176) 2011, 425-436.
  • De la politique neotribale, in: Sociétés. Revue des Sciences Humaines et Sociales, vol. 2/2011, 17-27.
  • Politics as Art of Translation. Max Weber's Political Ethic in Light of Ludwig Wittgenstein's and Norbert Elias's Theories of Language, in: Marta Bucholc, Anne Dwyer (Eds.): Disappearing Realities. Cultural Consequences of Social Change, Institut für die Wissenschaften vom Menschen Junior Visiting Fellows' Conferences, Vol. 30, 2011 available at
  • Communication sociale du droit - fin d'interprétation juridique classique?, in: Danuta Bartol, Anna Duszak, Hubert Izdebski, Jean-Marie Pierrel (Eds.): Langue, Droit, Societe. Language, Law, Society, Series Dictionnaire des notions politiques et sociales des pays d'Europe centrale et orientale, Cahiers nos. 5 et 6, 2006.