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
The cause was complications from AIDS, said his companion Dr. Theresa
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.)