Books·Canadian

Highway of Tears

Highway of Tears is a nonfiction book by Jessica McDiarmid.

Jessica McDiarmid

For decades, Indigenous women and girls have gone missing or been found murdered along an isolated stretch of highway in northwestern British Columbia. The highway is known as the Highway of Tears, and it has come to symbolize a national crisis.

Journalist Jessica McDiarmid meticulously investigates the devastating effect these tragedies have had on the families of the victims and their communities, and how systemic racism and indifference has created a climate where Indigenous women and girls are over-policed, yet under-protected. Through interviews with those closest to the victims — mothers and fathers, siblings and friends — McDiarmid provides an intimate, first-hand account of their loss and unflagging fight for justice. Examining the historically fraught social and cultural tensions between settlers and Indigenous peoples in the region, McDiarmid links these cases to others across Canada — now estimated to number up to 4,000 — contextualizing them within a broader examination of the undervaluing of Indigenous lives in the country.

Highway of Tears is a piercing exploration of our ongoing failure to provide justice for missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls, and testament to their families and communities' unwavering determination to find it. (From Doubleday Canada)

Jessica McDiarmid is a journalist. Highway of Tears is her first book.

Highway of Tears is on the 2020 RBC Taylor Prize shortlist. The winner will be revealed March 2, 2020.

Interviews with Jessica McDiarmid

For years, people in Northern B.C. have known about the Highway of Tears where multiple women and girls, many Indigenous, have gone missing or been murdered between Prince George and prince Rupert. Now Smithers resident Jessica McDiarmid has published a book she hopes sheds new light on these stories for an international audience. 7:37

More about the Highway of Tears

 

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