Departing at Dawn
Departing at Dawn
A young woman flees Argentina's Dirty War but cannot leave her past behind.
Translated by Alice Weldon
When her boyfriend is brutally murdered by the Argentine military, Berta escapes to the provincial countryside. Often lyrical, Gloria Lisé describes a young woman's life on the run and the trauma of a generation targeted by their government.
"It never ceases to astound me how many people around the world choose to deny a dark period in the history of their respective nations. Anyone anywhere today in need of the reminder that political change begins with speaking out should read this testimony." —Ana Castillo, author of Black Dove
“I just loved it because of its immense human depth and high quality of writing.” —David William Foster, author of Violence in Argentine Literature: Cultural Responses to Tyranny
"From the heart of Argentina comes a novel of the heart, where the outbreak of our worst military dictatorship is told with utmost reserve. Departing at Dawn is a beautifully simple, poetic story of solidarity and love, with memorable characters painted in the tender strokes of a watercolor." —Luisa Valenzuela, author of Black Novel with Argentines and Symmetries
“Deeply endearing. . . . The author offers no apologies or heroes, only humble beings . . . whose portraits are remarkably true-to-life. All kinds of readers will recognize themselves somewhere in this compelling narrative.” —Artenauta Periodico de Cultura
"With graceful writing . . . Lisé sketches Berta's quest for autonomy and self against the vivid, violent backdrop of a country seeking the same." —Publishers Weekly
"An intriguing, fast-paced fictional narrative of the 1976 Argentine dictatorship. This postmodern parable tells the story of a nomadic female subject on her fugitive escape from torture and death." —Magdalena Maiz-Peña, professor and chair of Spanish, Davidson College
"As homage for a generation sacrificed and a call for vigilance against national pogroms, Lisé taps memory as living historical archive to reveal the indomitable Argentine spirit of survival incarnate in its immigrant, indigenous and working class peoples. Highly recommended for high school and college libraries and curricula including English, Latin American, history, women's studies, and cultural studies." —Gisela Norat, professor of Spanish, Agnes Scott College
"Gloria Lisé's Departing at Dawn follows the trail blazed by Alicia Partnoy, Alicia Kozameh, Cristina Feijóo, and Nora Strejilevich, and makes a significant contribution to our understanding of that era. Alice Weldon's remarkable translation faithfully renders the tone of this poignant novel." —Cynthia Margarita Tompkins, associate professor of Spanish, Arizona State University