SAL/on air is a literary podcast featuring the best author talks from over thirty years of Seattle Arts & Lectures’ programming.
What drives storytelling? What is the story—who gets to tell it—and how? In a twist on the American road trip genre, Valeria Luiselli’s Lost Children Archive explores these tensions. As an artist couple and their children embark on trip from New York to Arizona, wrestling with their family’s crisis, a bigger one comes to them through the car radio: that of the tens of thousands of unaccompanied Central American and Mexican children arriving in the U.S. without papers.
Author Valeria Luiselli was born in Mexico City and grew up in South Korea, South Africa, and India. She was only able to write her new novel, she tells us, after writing a work of non-fiction first, Tell Me How It Ends. That book, a polemic about the U.S.-Mexico border, is structured around the 40 questions that she translated and asked undocumented children facing deportation as a volunteer court translator. After Valeria’s talk about these two works, she’s joined by Florangela Davila, news director at the Seattle-Tacoma NPR station, KNKX, for a Q&A. This event took place at Benaroya Hall in April of 2019.