One by one, the bodies of men wash up on the shore of the river. They are claimed by the local women as husbands and fathers.
Even though the dead bodies are unrecognisable, a tug-of-war arises between the local police, who insist that the women couldn't possibly recognise the men, and the women who deman the right to bury their lost loved ones.
It is a power struggle between love, dignity and honour, and the lesser god of brute force. A lesson in how power really works, and how it can be made to work differently.
Ariel Dorfman's tale of individual courage in the face of political oppression forms a testament to the disappeared, and those living under totalitarian regimes the world over, who are taken away for 'questioning' and never return.