Thomas Belmonte, 48, is Dead
Wrote of Lives of Naples's Poor

By Eric Pace

Professor thomas Belmonte, a Hofsta university anthroplogist, known for a book about the lives of the poor in Naples, died on Thursday at Roosevelt Hospital. He was 48 and lived on the Upper West Side of Manhattan.

The cause was complications from AIDS, said his companion Dr. Theresa Aiello-Gerber.

Professor Belmonte, a Longe Island-born cultural anthropologist, had been on the Hofstra faculty since 1978.

His book, "The Broken Fountain," (Columbia University Press, 1979) about the Fontana del Re slum in Naples, won critics' praise for its "uncommon eloquence" and its perceptive first-hand observations.

Professor Belmonte's other scholarly interests included grief, Italian-American life and images of the trickster in folklore and myth. He also contributed to other books and wrote numerous articles in scholarly journals.

His grandparents came to the United States from Bari in southern Italy. He was born in East Meadow, L.I., graduated from high school there and received a B.A. magna cum laude from Hofstra in 1969 and a Ph.D. in anthropology, with distinction, from Columbia in 1978. While remaining on the Hofstra faculty, he did additional teaching at Columbia, New York University, Sarah Lawrence College and the New School for Social Research.

His marriage to Elaine Marchan ended in divorce in 1973.

In addition to his companion, Dr. Aiello-Gerber of Manhattan, he is survived by his parents, Vito and Theodora Belmonte of Pampano Beach, Fla.; a daughten, Christina, of Manhappan; two sisters, Angela Glueckert of East Meadow, L.I., and Jacqueline Jacobs of Levittown, L.I., and a brother, John, of Boca Raton, Fla.

(New York Times, Monday, June 26, 1995.)

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