Howard S. Becker has made major contributions to the sociology of deviance, sociology of art, and sociology of music. He has also written extensively on the practice of sociology. He received a Ph.D. from the University of Chicago, where he was also an instructor in sociology and social sciences. He became professor of sociology at Northwestern University, where he taught for twenty-five years. When he retired from active teaching he was a professor of sociology and an adjunct professor of music at the University of Washington. He lives and works in San Francisco and Paris.