Ella Maillart

Ella Maillart, one of the greatest women travellers of the 20th century, spent her life discovering Asia and trying to introduce it to her Western readership. Quickly aware that nothing attracted her in the West, she explored, between the two wars, ancient cultures already transformed by the world’s changes. “With no desire to come back” and wishing that “the travel would never stop”, she always insisted in her treks about slowness, the dialogue between cultures which sometimes offers those moments of “mutual sympathy” with the inhabitants of the places crossed. Her writing started a tradition of modern feminine travel narratives as we can see in Oasis Interdites. Before her death on the 27 March 1997 when she was 94, Ella Maillart saw a new edition of her complete work which was rediscovered by a new generation.

  • Video Plans-Fixes Ella Maillart

    During the summer solstice 1984, in front of her chalet in Chandolin (a village in Valais located at 2000 meters high), Ella Maillart in the company of Bertil Galland, remembers the Russian and Chinese Turkestan of her travels (Image: Jean Mayerat, sound: Nag Ansorge), for the collection Plans-Fixes .