Because They Were Women

  • Translated by: Chantal Bilodeau
  • Pages:308
  • Publisher:Second Story Press
  • Themes:Montreal Massacre, …cole Polytechnique, mass murder, feminism, violence against women
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  • Pub Date:11/10/2020
  • Age Groups:Adult Nonfiction
Paperback
9781772601428
$24.95 USD
Fourteen young women, murdered because they were women, are memorialized in this definitive account of the tragic day that forced a reckoning with violence against women in our culture. The victims of what became known as the “Montreal Massacre” are remembered, their lives cut short on December 6, 1989 when a man entered École Polytechnique and systematically shot every young woman he encountered. The killer was motivated by a misogyny whose roots go far beyond one man and one day. This book examines how December 6 precipitated an entire cultural shift in thinking around gender-based violence.

“Boileau’s approach has the double effect of humanizing that list of names and ages we associate with December 6 and making the reader feel the loss of these young women and their futures all the more keenly.”

– December 2020
Ce jour-là’s English publication is important, sharing the mourning across the two colonial language communities, and sharing some sense of agency as well.
– Montreal Review of Books
It highlights how far Quebec has come in the years since the massacre, which happened at a time when few women would publicly identify themselves as feminists. But just as importantly, it highlights how far there is still left to go.
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