Selva Almada: Giving Voice to the Victims of Femicide

One of a rising generation of talented Argentine writers, Selva Almada burst onto the English-language book scene last year with the publication of The Wind that Lays Waste, a short but highly-charged novel that won the Book Festival’s 2019 First Book Award.

She returns with a searing, devastating hybrid book which could be described as journalistic fiction or fictional journalism. Dead Girls reimagines the lives of three real-life small-town teenagers who were murdered in the 1980s – young women who in many ways were not dissimilar to Almada herself. Their murderers were never brought to justice and the killings were routinely dismissed by locals due to the girls’s impoverished, working-class backgrounds.

Since then, countless femicides – as well as an increase in violence towards LGBTIQA+ people – have come to light not only in Latin America but across the world. Almada’s unforgettable, necessary book is not only hard-hitting, it is a plangent call to action. She discusses Dead Girls with bestselling Argentinian writer and journalist Mariana Enriquez.

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