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Extra resources for The Man Who Left Too Soon: The Biography of Stieg Larsson
To say that he didn’t give his body a chance almost understates the case. ’ The suggestion that Stieg Larsson did not talk to his brother and father for many years is disputed, but it is certainly true that he never married his partner Eva Gabrielsson – and by the diktats of the Swedish legal system, she, accordingly, did not inherit his estate or literary legacy (which is principally, of course, the three novels of the Millennium Trilogy). The legatees were, in fact, his father Erland and his brother Joakim.
After national service, Stieg began a 30-year stint as the UK magazine Searchlight’s Scandinavian correspondent. He had decided to devote his life to fighting fascism along with religious and racial intolerance in the 1980s and 1990s, writing books on honour killings and the extreme Right in Sweden. This was a dangerous time for a writer of Larsson’s stamp, and a car bomb had killed a fellow investigative journalist. But Stieg had a source of strength in his partner, Eva Gabrielsson, an architectural historian who shared his political convictions.
Inheriting his father’s talents for the visual arts, from 1977 to 1999 Larsson held down a job as a graphic designer for an important Swedish news agency, Tidningarnas Telegrambyrå. It was inevitable that with his deeply felt political convictions, organisational skills and journalistic savvy, Larsson would at some point bring together these different strands of experience to forge something that he could feel proud of creating. He decided to found the Swedish Expo Foundation – which was inspired by the similarly motivated Searchlight Foundation in Britain – with a brief to ‘counteract the growth of the extreme Right and the white power culture in schools and among young people’.