Alice Parizeau, (née Poznanska), journalist, novelist and essayist (b at Luniniec, Poland 25 Jul 1930; d at Montréal 30 Sep 1990). Alice Parizeau spent her childhood in Krakow.
Alice Parizeau, (née Poznanska), journalist, novelist and essayist (b at Luniniec, Poland 25 Jul 1930; d at Montréal 30 Sep 1990). Alice Parizeau spent her childhood in Krakow. Very young she acted as a liaison officer during World War II, and after the Warsaw Uprising she was interned in a German labour camp. On liberation she went to Paris to pursue studies in the humanities, and graduated in both political science and law in 1953. Parizeau emigrated to Montréal in 1955 where she collaborated on various newspapers and magazines including Châtelaine, Cité libre, La Presse, LE DEVOIR, La Patrie, and MACLEAN'S). She also had a career as a CBC researcher, and from 1970 was research chair at the Université de Montréal's criminology department.
Alice Parizeau's difficult life in Poland in a context of violence and her integration abroad together form the basis of her literary achievements. Some of her early works written during the 60s (Voyage en Pologne, 1962; La Québécoise en Europe "rouge", 1965), are reminiscent of a European past. Others, on the contrary, demonstrate a reflection rooted in the present (Les Solitudes humaines, 1962; Fuir, 1963; Rue Sherbrooke Ouest, 1967; L' Envers de l'enfance, 1976; Côte-des-Neiges, 1983).
Alice Parizeau's career as an author really blossomed in North America and Europe with the publication of her trilogy, a Polish saga marked by the tragic experience of war when life consisted of courage and permanent suffering. The first part, Les Lilas fleurissent à Varsovie (1981), won the European Prize from l'Association des écrivains de langue française in 1982. The trilogy continues with La Charge des sangliers (1982) and concludes with Ils se sont connus à Lwow (1985). The autobiographical character of the story is supported by Alice Parizeau's talent as a story-teller and succeeds in keeping the readers in suspense with the elaborate staging of rich and complex destinies - both collective and individual. Other novels followed including Blizzard au Québec (1987) which pays tribute to the pioneers of James Bay, and Nata et le professeur (1988) which intertwines love and the atrocities of war during the 1943 Katyn Massacre orchestrated by the Soviets. In the spring of 1988 Alice Parizeau was stricken with incurable cancer and took to keeping a logbook that would be published posthumously as Une Femme (1991). In it, the author traced the thread of her existence shared between visceral love for a ruptured Poland, and productive exile with her husband, former Québec Premier Jacques PARIZEAU.