Goffredo Fofi was born in Gubbio, in the province of Perugia, on April 15, 1937. In 1955, at eighteen, reached by the echo of Danilo Dolci's exploits, he left Gubbio to reach it in Sicily of the time, archaic and very poor. He is deeply fascinated by the philosopher of Partinico, by his battles alongside the unemployed, by the backward strikes, by the fight against the mafia built on the foundation of a Gandhian pacifism at that time still unknown in Italy.
In an interview published on La Repubblica on April 14, 2007, entitled Goffredo against all and released on the occasion of his seventies, he explains that the reverse strikes "They consisted, for example, of paving a dirt road with a group of unemployed. And claim the right to work". The carabinieri signed him the way sheet "To have taught without receiving a salary". Lucio Lombardo Radice wrote in his defense an editorial on the front page of L'Unità: «Alphabet crime».
His vision as an intellectual engagé has always been aimed at building an alternative network to the culture of consumerism and cultural homologation. Essayist, theater, literary and film critic, over time he has become an authoritative voice on the national cultural scene. His critical commitment focused above all on the relationship between social reality and its artistic representation. He contributed, with other intellectuals, including Grazia Cherchi and Piergiorgio Bellocchio, to the birth of historical magazines such as the Quaderni Piacentini, La Terra vista dalla Luna, Ombre rosse, Linea d'ombra.
He was also the animator of magazines active between the eighties and nineties such as the traveling pigeon, Nino tomorrow in Palermo and Dove sta Zazà.
His participation with minorities and the "underprivileged" has also prompted him to take care of children from popular neighborhoods; he was in fact among the founders in Naples of the canteen of proletarian children. To this he added a strong participation towards the "southern question" which prompted him to meet and attend the major post-war meridionalists, from Salvemini to Manlio Rossi-Doria. From a "southern" perspective, he has also created magazines such as Dove sta Zazà made in collaboration with Stefano De Matteis.
He was editor of Lo Straniero magazine, which he founded in 1997, which ended publications in late 2016 and creator of the Lo Straniero Award. As an editorial consultant, magazine editor and militant critic, he discovered, encouraged and followed the beginnings of several writers, more or less successful, such as Alessandro Baricco, Raul Montanari, Sergio Atzeni, Stefano Benni, Giulio Angioni, Maurizio Maggiani, Roberto Saviano.
He currently directs the magazine Gli asini and is the editorial director of "Edizioni dell'asino". He collaborates with the newspaper Avvenire and with the magazines Panorama, Internazionale and Film TV.