Gabriela Wiener

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“An intimate story from the family archive that is also the infamous history of our continent.”—Valeria Luiselli, author of Lost Children Archive 

Award-winning Peruvian journalist Gabriela Wiener delivers her stunning English breakthrough in this "appealingly raw" (NPR) and "incisive" (Publishers Weekly) work of autofiction that explores colonialism through one woman’s family ties to both the colonized and colonizer. 

Alone in a museum in Paris, Gabriela Wiener confronts her complicated family heritage. She is visiting an exhibition of pre-Columbian artifacts, spoils of European colonialism, many stolen from her homeland of Peru. As she peers at countless sculptures of Indigenous faces, each resembling her own, she sees herself in them—but the man responsible for pillaging them was her own great-great-grandfather, Austrian colonial explorer Charles Wiener. 

In the wake of her father’s death, Gabriela returns to Peru. In alternating strands, she begins to probe her father’s infidelity, her own polyamorous relationship, and the history of her colonial ancestor, unpacking the legacy that is her birthright. From the eye-patched persona her father adopted to carry out his double life to the brutal racism she encounters in her ancestor Charles’s book, she traces a cycle of abandonment, jealousy, and fraud, in turn reframing her own personal struggles with desire, love, and race. 

Translated by Julia Sanches

Product details

ISBN-13: 9780063256682

Number of pages: 192

Format: Hardback

Imprint: HarperVia

English en