Goloboff, Gerardo Mario

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GOLOBOFF, GERARDO MARIO (1939– ), writer and literary critic. Born in Carlos Casares, one of the agricultural colonies established by the Jewish Colonization Association in Argentina, Goloboff was formally trained as a lawyer but dedicated his life to literature. He wrote books on renowned Argentine authors such as Roberto Arlt, Jorge Luis Borges, and Julio Cortázar. He taught literature for almost 20 years in France. He later resided in Argentina.

Goloboff's first book was Entre la diáspora y octubre (1966), a collection of poetry. It was followed by the novel Caballos por el fondo de los ojos (1976), published the same year that the military coup d'état occurred. He is best known for his trilogy of novels that takes place in the fictional town of Algarrobos: El criador de palomas (1988), La luna que cae (1989), and El soñador de Smith (1990). Together the novels recreate, to a certain extent, the author's own experience growing up in the countryside. Goloboff manages to insert Jewish specificity into a long tradition of literary myth-making begun in the 19th century that arises from the Pampa, mainly in the form of gauchesque literature. The novels have been widely praised for the author's lyrical style of story-telling that combine biblical imagery with the allegorical representation of Argentine socio-historical reality, while at the same time weaving a mystery for the main character, El Pibe, to unravel in an attempt to uncover his past. Although his most recent novel, Comuna Verdad (1995), also takes place in Algarrobos it is not part of the aforementioned trilogy. This fifth novel is based more strictly on historical circumstances and events, namely the formation of an agricultural commune by an anarchist group of primarily immigrant origins. Nevertheless, all four of these last titles are gathered together in English translation under the title The Algarrobos Quartet (2002).

[Darrell B. Lockhart (2nd ed.)]