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Rita Arditti was born to a Jewish family in Argentina and studied biology in Italy before settling in the USA. In the 1970s, while doing research on genetics at Brandeis and Harvard, she co-founded the activist group Science for the People movement. Later, she also helped start the Women’s Community Cancer Project. After agreeing to serve as an interpreter for the visiting Argentinian group Las Abuelas de Plaza de Mayo (Grandmothers of the Plaza de Mayo), she was drawn to their cause and began to document their work. Her book Searching for Life: The Grandmothers of the Plaza de Mayo and the Disappeared Children of Argentina raised international awareness, and was a factor in the grandmothers’ nomination for the Nobel Peace Prize.
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