Lévi-Strauss, Claude

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Lévi-Strauss, Claude Gender: M
born on 28 November 1908 at 01:00 (= 01:00 AM )
Place Brussels, Belgium, 50n50, 4e20
Timezone GMT h0e (is standard time)
Data source
Quoted BC/BR
Rodden Rating AA
Collector: Gauquelin
Astrology data s_su.18.gif s_sagcol.18.gif 05°25' s_mo.18.gif s_capcol.18.gif 27°51 Asc.s_vircol.18.gif 27°04'

Claude Lévi-Strauss
photo: UNESCO/Michel Ravassard, license cc-by-3.0


Belgian-French social anthropologist and leading exponent of Structuralism. "Structuralism," says Levi-Strauss, "is the search for unsuspected harmonies..." His first major work was published in 1949, "The Elementary Structures of Kinship. He obtained popular recognition "A World on the Wane," 1955, a literary, intellectual autobiography. His books include "The Raw and the Cooked," "The Savage Mind" and "Structural Anthropology and Totemism."

Levi-Strauss studied philosophy and law at the University of Paris 1927-1932, after which he taught secondary school and was a member of Jean-Paul Sartre's intellectual circle. He later taught at universities in Brazil, 1935-39. He returned to France for military service but, as a Jew, was forced to leave again when Germany occupied the country. He spent three years teaching at the New School for Social Research in New York City from 1946 to 1947 and was cultural attaché to the French embassy in Washington.

Returning to France in 1948, he become Professor of Ethnology at the University of Paris and in 1950, assumed the Chair of Social Anthropology at the College de France. He was elected to the French Academy in 1973.

The son of an artist and member of an intellectual French Jewish family, Levi-Strauss appeals to the deepest feelings among the alienated intellectuals of our society. His popularity rests on his rejection of history and humanism, in his refusal to see Western civilization as privileged and unique, in his emphasis on form over content and in his insistence that the savage mind is equal to the civilized mind.

Eventually both law and philosophy bored him. His three "mistresses" in life were said to be Marxism, psychoanalysis and geology, but anthropology gave the scholar the opportunity to come into contact with the lives of men of different cultures, rather than just Western cultures. He spent more than half of his 59 years studying the behavior of the North and South American Indian tribes. Levi-Strauss insists that myth is a language because myth has to be told in order to exist. A myth is almost always set some time long ago, with a timeless story. He says myth is actually on a more complex level than language. Myth shares with language the following characteristics: 1. It's made of units that are put together according to certain rules and 2. These units form relationships with each other, based on opposites which provide the basis of the structure. He concludes that the structural method of myth analysis brings order out of chaos.

The centenarian's heart stopped at his home in Paris on October 30, 2009.

Link to Wikipedia biography



  • Social : Begin a program of study 1927 (University of Paris, five years)
  • Work : New Job 1935 (Taught in Brazil, four years)
  • Work : New Job 1946 (Taught at the New School for Social Research, three years)
  • Family : Change residence 1948 (Moved back to Paris for new job)
  • Work : Published/ Exhibited/ Released 1949 (First publication released)
  • Work : New Job 1950 (Elected Chair of Social Anthropology)
  • Work : Published/ Exhibited/ Released 1955 (Book released)
  • Work : Gain social status 1973 (Elected to the French Academy)
  • Death by Heart Attack 30 October 2009 (Age 100 of cardiac arrest in Paris)
    chart Placidus Equal_H.

Source Notes

Gauquelin Vol 6/510


  • Personal : Death : Long life more than 80 yrs (Nearly 101)
  • Vocation : Education : Teacher (Secondary and professor)
  • Vocation : Science : Anthropology (Social)
  • Vocation : Writers : Autobiographer
  • Vocation : Writers : Textbook/ Non-fiction (Structualism, totemism, anthropology)