Journalist and writer Silvana Paternostro was born in 1962 in Barranquilla, Colombia. She has written extensively on Cuba and Central and South America as well as on women's issues, AIDS, revolutionary movements, underground economies, and the intersection of culture with politics and economics.
Her book In the Land of God and Man: Confronting Our Sexual Culture explores gender roles and the effect of government and religion on women's lives in Latin America, and was nominated for the PEN/Martha Abrams Award for First Nonfiction. Her exposé of re-virginization centers in the US appeared in the book Se Habla Español: Voces Latinas en USA, the first anthology of new Latino voices in the United States published in Spanish. Her second book, My Colombian War: A Journey Through the Country I Left Behind (Henry Holt, 2007), mixes memoir with history and reportage to tell the story of Colombia's 40-year-old civil war and uncover the truth about US involvement in the country.
Silvana is a contributing editor of Bomb magazine and a frequent contributor to The New York Times Magazine, Newsweek Magazine, The Paris Review, The New Republic, and numerous other publications. Her work is frequently translated and re-printed, especially in Latin America. In 1999 she was selected by Time/CNN as one of 50 Latin American Leaders for the New Millennium. She was also associate producer on Che: The Argentine and Che: Guerrilla, a two part movie based on the life of Che Guevara, directed by Steven Soderbergh and starring Benicio del Toro, which premiered at the Cannes Film Festival in 2008
She lives in New York City and Colombia.