Gaitán, Jorge Eliécer

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Gaitán, Jorge Eliécer


Born Jan. 23, 1898, in Bogotá; died there Apr. 9, 1948. Colombian political figure.

In 1924, Gaitán received the degree of doctor of law from the National University in Bogotá. In 1929, in Parliament, he condemned the mass shooting of striking workers on the plantations of the United Fruit Company in the department of Magdalena. In 1940 and 1943 he was minister of education and minister of labor, health, and social security. In 1946 he became the head of the Liberal Party and, in 1947, the chairman of the Senate. He was the author of a bill on the nationalization of the oil deposits exploited by American monopolies. He exposed the imperialist goals of the USA and the antinationalist policies of the Colombian delegation at the Ninth International Conference of American States (Bogotá). He was killed by reactionaries. His murder served as the impetus to a popular uprising in Bogotá.


Peña, L. D. Gaitán íntimo (2nd ed.). Bogotá, 1949.
Osorio Lizarazo, J. A. Gaitán: Vida, muerte y permanente presencia. Buenos Aires, 1952.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.