MEXICO CITY — In 2010, 72 migrants were killed in San Fernando, Mexico, a consequence of the mob activity that has recently been causing so much chaos in the country. Mexican-Catalan novelist Lolita Bosch reacted to the massacre by sending out letters to 300 friends, asking for their help.
Working with a network of writers, artists, academics, scientists, psychologists, journalists, victims, activists and students, Bosch was able to initiate Nuestra Aparente Rendición. The website is dedicated to respect and peace in Mexico and seeks to support victims of violence in Mexico by telling their stories in sensitive and compassionate ways.
Bosch defines the ongoing violence in Mexico as a war: “We say it’s war – the numbers of dead people and disappeared people, the cruelty that is making people so sad and scared – we decided to call it war.”
Since 2010, NAR has recorded the names of 500,000 people who have died due to this violent conflict. Much of the bloodshed in Mexico is mob- and drug-related. Poor people migrating across the country are often caught in the crossfire. Mexico is also one of the most dangerous countries for journalists and other media personnel, ranked just behind Somalia.
Bosch, speaking about her motivation to start NAR, says: “We are the privileged people in Mexico. We have access to education, we have access to nutrition and we have access to medicine. That’s a lot in Latin America. So I thought that we should share our voice and we should give our voice to the people who couldn’t reach it.”
NAR relies on the hard work of 50 permanent volunteers as well as collaboration with hundreds of people who donate time and labor to the cause. The project’s collective goal is to guard the memory of those killed in the war in Mexico by investigating their lives and telling their stories, all in an effort to begin to understand the reality of violence inside Mexico and to give respect to those who have died.
Bosch, currently serving as editor-in-chief of NAR, considers the project to be the most valuable work she has ever pursued. “As a novelist, you never have the feeling that you’re doing something useful,” she admits. “Okay, now we’re doing something useful, and it’s really useful. And it’s amazing because with literary resources you can help people so easily.”
The project’s website overflows with artistic, intellectual and practical views on the ongoing struggle in Mexico, including journalistic reports, poetry, stories, blog posts and photography. Bosch welcomes the global community to participate in the project and to add to the dialogue surrounding this pressing issue of deadly violence in Mexico. Nuestra Aparente Rendición is a valuable tool that is helping many people navigate the terrifying reality in Mexico in the most human way possible.
Sources: Nuestra Aparente Rendición, Lolita Bosch, Nieman Reports