Pierre Bourdieu’s social scientific concepts and theories are very popular among social scientists today. However, his early writings based on fieldwork in Algeria are far less well known, despite the fact that in was in these texts that his famous concepts and theories originated. This article sets out to examine the mutual relationship between Bourdieu and the Kabyle people from several perspectives. The author focuses on Bourdieu’s relationship to the fieldwork, his relations with Kabyle intellectuals, and at the role they played as his key informants and ‘experts’ on Kabyle culture. The article investigates to what extent and how in France Bourdieu defended the academic activities of the Kabyle people relating to their own culture. It also studies Bourdieu’s opinion on the Kabyle people’s emancipation efforts within independent Algeria. Finally, it looks at how familiar the Kabyle people are today with Bourdieu’s work on their society and culture and how his body of work is interpreted, taught at universities and used as a tool in the formation process of Kabyle collective identity. The article is based on a study of primary and secondary sources: Bourdieu’s scholarly writings, media interviews, his speeches at ceremonies, and his correspondence, and it draws on published interviews with Bourdieu’s friends and colleagues. The author also used her own fieldwork in Algeria as an auxiliary source of data.