What if she no longer held her tongue? It would be a different world.
Alice Rivaz (1901-1998) propels us into the very heart of her century, as her written works question the darker side of modernity: solitude as an inevitable part of our human condition, material hardship, wars and social conflicts. A true pioneer, she also illustrates the slow rise of women towards a new, full and subversive participation in the practical, political and symbolic aspects of human life.
The present content has been taken from the exhibition inviting visitors to discover this prominent writer by evoking her unique family ties, the circumstances in which her talent came to light, how history unfolds in her novels, her steadfast sensitivity to human suffering, and her unwavering feminist lucidity.
Curators: Valérie Cossy (UNIL) & Marianne Dyens (Alice Rivaz Association)
Exhibition from 20 May to 30 October 2021, Bibliothèque cantonale universitaire, Lausanne, Riponne
Timeline of the life and works of Alice Rivaz
Growing up with exceptionally politicised parents, Alice Rivaz soon developed a critical perspective on Swiss conventions.
Thanks to an independent lifestyle and a home of her own in Geneva, Alice Rivaz published her first novel in 1940.
The author questions the normality of sheltered lives, and their blindness in the aftermath of the First World War.
Long before écriture féminine, Alice Rivaz wrote about the difference of a woman’s voice in a male-centred tradition.
In creating new women’s voices in fiction, the novelist revives the memory of the female writers of the past.