The Big Read Blog (Archive)

Telling Stories with Julia Alvarez

Dedé Mirabal (l) with author Julia Alvarez. Photo courtesy of Dedé Mirabal

This week, we celebrate the birthday of author Julia Alvarez. Alvarez is an acclaimed novelist, poet, and essayist, whose second novel, In the Time of the Butterflies, is a Big Read selection. Set in the Dominican Republic, In the Time of the Butterflies is a fictionalized account of the Mirabal sisters, three of whom were murdered by henchmen of dictator Rafael Trujillo for their resistance to his regime. The girls were known in the underground by their code name: las Mariposas, or the butterflies. Alvarez spent her childhood in the Dominican Republic until the family fled the country because of her father’s political activities. It was soon after her family arrived in New York City that the author first learned of the Mirabal sisters. Here she recounts how that discovery led to the writing of In the Time of the Butterflies. [4:54]

[audio:http://bigreadblog.arts.gov//audio/Blog-JuliaAlvarez.mp3]

[transcript]

Listen to the full interview with Julia Alvarez!

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