Pierre Bourdieu (1930-2002) was a French sociologist whose work has been widely influential in both the social sciences and the humanities. He was born in rural southwestern France where his father was employed as a postal worker. Bourdieu received a scholarship that enabled him to attend the prestigious lycée Louis le Grand in Paris. He subsequently enrolled at the École normale supérieure where he studied with Louis Althusser. After graduating with a degree in philosophy, Bourdieu first taught at the high school level and then in 1959 he was appointed to a position in philosophy at the Sorbonne. He taught at the University of Paris from 1960 to 1964. In 1964 he was named director of studies at the École des hautes études en sciences sociales and founded the Center for the Sociology of Education and Culture. In 1982 Bourdieu was named chair of sociology at the Collège de France. He received the “Medaille d’Or” from the French National Scientific Research Center in 1993.