Switzerland Literature in French and Italian

Switzerland Literature in French and Italian

French language literature

The first eminent personalities of French-speaking Swiss literature also belong to the eighteenth century, but the most notable writers for their philosophical interests (EL de Muralt, J.-. J. Burlamaqui, J.-J. Rousseau), or scientific (C . Bonnet, HB de Saussure) rather belong, by right, to the more general European culture. It is remarkable that the most salient feature of French-speaking Swiss literature continues to be, even in the following period, the attention to problems relating to man, and therefore the broad problematic (economic, philosophical, moral) present not only in the greatest theorists of the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries (M.me de Staël, B. Constant, Sismondi), but also in the following A. Vinet, AE Cherbuliez, V. de Gasparin, C. Sécrétan, Madame de Pressensé, J.-É. Naville with his son H.-A. Naville, philosopher and epistemologist, É. Rod, and most recently D. de Rougemont. M. Monnier and his son Philippe deserve a separate mention for the extensive attention devoted to the social and cultural problems of Italy, the linguist F. de Saussure, the psychologist J. Piaget. ● Another strand of French-speaking Swiss culture is that of criticism and non-fiction, in which, in addition to the aforementioned Monnier and É. Rod, must be reported: P. Godet ; P. Seippel; L. Dumur, co-founder of the Mercure de France ; E. Gilliard, founder in Lausanne, together with the art critic P. Budry, the poet and writer CF Ramuz and others, of the innovators Cahiers vaudois (1914-19); M. Raymond ; A. Béguin, founder in 1941 of the Cahiers du Rhône; G. Poulet, J. Rousset, J. Starobinski, exponents of the Geneva School. If not much authentically Swiss is found in several of the writers cited, as indeed in HF Amiel and B. Cendrars, who were among the most eminent figures expressed by the culture of the country, respectively in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, there are numerous writers who have decidedly oriented themselves towards French and cosmopolitan culture: V. Cherbuliez ; G. de Pourtalès; the poet CA Cingria, animator of the Geneva magazine La voile latine (1904-10); R. de Traz, founder with J. Chenevière of the Revue de Genève; the novelist and playwright A. Cohen, born in Greece but naturalized Swiss; G. Haldas, poet, essayist, translator of U. Saba and author of autobiographical stories; G. Piroué. Worthy of interest, however, is a whole rich production more intimately circumscribed to the natural and social environment of Switzerland. Among the poets, especially J. Olivier, founder of the Revue suisse (1838-61); the symbolist H. Spiess; PH Matthey; G. Roud, translator of F. Hölderlin and Novalis; E.-H. Crisinel; and again G. Trolliet, M. Chappaz, P. Jacottet, translator of G. Leopardi and G. Ungaretti. In fiction, in addition to R. Toepffer, the aforementioned Godet and Monnier, and P. Girard, also author of poetic collections, the aforementioned Ramuz stands out above all, in whose stories the eternal struggle between man and nature is reflected. In the footsteps of Ramuz are C.-F. Landry, M. Zermatten, G. Borgeaud, J.-P. Monnier, J. Chessex, poet, novelist, essayist, as well as founder in 1964 of the magazine Écriture. ● In the literary panorama of the 20th century. the production of some writers occupies an important place: M. Saint-Hélier, author of two cycles of novels constructed with an elaborate associative technique and long monologues; C. Colomb (pseudonym of M.-L. Reymond), in whose work the nouveau roman is prefigured; A. Rivaz (pseudonym of A. Golay), attentive to the problem of the female condition; CS Bille, novelist and poet; the feminist A. Cuneo; TO THE. Grobéty, which moves in the line of N. Sarraute. Among the playwrights we remember: F. Chavannes; R. Morax, founder of the Théâtre du Jorat (1903); the aforementioned Ramuz, whose Histoire du soldat (1918) was set to music by I. Stravinskij, and Cohen; B. Liègme; W. Weideli; M. Viala. Also worth noting: the novelist J. Mercanton; the poet J. Cuttat; the poet and essayist M. Eigeldinger; the narrator and playwright R. Pinget ; Y. Velan, animator of the dedicated magazine Rencontre (Lausanne, 1950-53); the surrealist poets A. Voisard (next to R. Char) and V. Godel; the novelist and essayist E. Barilier.

Italian language literature

In the Italian China, the Grisons gave a modest development to the dialectal literature; the Canton of Ticino, which maintained its spiritual adherence to Italian origins constant, had, starting from the 16th century, prestigious writers such as the humanist F. Cicereio, the polygraph P. Gaudenzi, the poet GB Riva, and F. Soave, popularizer of the sensory theories and teacher of A. Manzoni. ● But it was only in the 19th century, with the achievement of the constitutional reform (1830) and the awareness of its historical function, that the Canton of Ticino experienced a political-cultural awakening and produced its own substantial literature. From China Franscini drew impulse a thriving tradition of historical studies, fueled by P. Peri and later by A. Manzoni, A. Pioda, B. Bertoni, found in E. Motta its most accomplished representative. Of great importance is the work of the Dante artist GA Scartazzini and the linguist C. Salvioni. The awakening is also observed in the purely literary field, where among theater authors such as A. Pedrazzini, and storytellers such as G. Anastasi, attentive to local political struggles, A. Nessi, linked to the Milanese Scapigliatura, and many others, stand out, in the twentieth century, the figures of the poet and lyric narrator F. Chiesa, by G. Galgari, vigorous novelist and essayist, founder and director (1941-62) of the Italian-speaking Switzerland magazine, and by G. Zoppi, cantor of the mountain world. The verses permeated with religious spirit by V. Abbondio are also inspired by nature. ● In the middle of the 20th century, we can distinguish, among the poets, G. Orelli who moves in the area of ​​postermeticism, A. Pedrali, P. Martini, A. Casé, also known as the narrator. Writers such as A. Jenni, T. Poma, F. Filippini, also active as a painter, G. Bonalumi move between fiction and non-fiction. In fiction, we mention Giovanni Orelli, Giorgio’s cousin and novelist of undoubted originality, sensitive to socio-political issues, the writers A. Ceresa, A. Felder, F. Jaeggy, and again, witnesses of a local reality whose marginality they experience with a strong sense of belonging, E. Pedretti, A. Alberti, A. Nessi, C. Nembrini, A. Buletti. In non-fiction, alongside G. Fasani, also appreciated as a poet, and P. Fontana, we remember above all G. Pozzi, a European literary critic.

Switzerland Literature in French and Italian

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