In 2021, Switzerland is celebrating 50 years of women having the right to vote. But there was another important date in the history of women’s voting rights – February 1st, 1959 – the day the men said no.
My historical novel, Voting Day, which takes place over the course of this day, tells the story of four women whose lives are connected by the fate of a foster child. While the men go out to vote, the women have other things on their minds – mostly.
Vreni (48) is a farmer’s wife and foster mother with grown-up children and abandoned dreams. On the eve of an operation, she meets her daughter Margrit in the city. Margrit (23) seems to have found success as an office girl in Bern but suddenly finds herself facing a terrible dilemma at work.
Esther (30), a Yenish single mother who was taken from her family as a child, works as a hospital cleaner. Now that her own son Ruedi has been taken into care, the future looks bleak. Esther’s boss Beatrice (61) has made a good career as the hospital administrator. She dreads the prospect of a no vote after putting her heart and soul into the yes campaign. Find out how the trajectory of all their lives changes on this day.