"My dead migrant has fingerprints, but nobody claims her. *I* claim her; she is mine."
September 7, 2011 9:18 AM Subscribe
A year ago this August, 72 migrant workers -- 58 men and 14 women -- 'were on their way to the US border when they were murdered by a drug gang at a ranch in northern Mexico, in circumstances that remain unexplained. Since then, a group of Mexican journalists and writers have created' a "Day of the Dead-style Virtual Altar" Spanish-language website, 72migrantes.com, to commemorate each of the victims, some of whom have never been identified. The New York Review of Books has English translations of five of their profiles.
"At 72 Migrantes, you can listen to music for the dead (click ‘descargar canciones’), leave a rose icon (click ‘dejar una rosa’), and share food with living migrants by making a donation (click ‘donaciones’). Donations are sent directly to Father Alejandro Solalinde of Hermanos en el Camino, a church organization that provides food, shelter and support to migrants and those who have been kidnapped or threatened by drug and human traffickers in Mexico.Google Translate does change the text on the site from Spanish to English.
The centerpiece of 72 Migrantes is a collection of narratives and photographs, one for each of the victims. The authors (among them Elena Poniatowska, Jorge Volpi, and Juan Villoro) have written the stories of the dead by seeking information about their lives, often from their loved ones. But most families of the migrants have been too afraid to identify themselves publicly. Many of the authors, with little more than a name, have written narratives that fall somewhere between obituary and testimonial. And others have chosen to write the stories of the unidentified by imagining the lives of their subjects."
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