Mostly known as an anthropologist of the structuralist persuasion. He was born in 1908 in Brussels --- nonetheless he was French, one might say intensely French.

He worked first in Paris, then in São Paulo in Brasil. He lived in New York during WWII. Eventually he moved back to France.

A complex and enjoyable writer. One of his chief ideas is the structuralist concept that cultures can be analyzed by looking for binary (or n-ary) oppositions.
Of course, some oppositions are clearly visible while others are hidden (at times voluntarily). Some books by him: