Swedish crime writer Liza Marklund is known for being one of the first female Swedish authors to gain success in the crime genre in the late 1990s. Her crime novels about investigative reporter Annika Bengtzon have sold well from the start, and they all touch upon subjects that are in line with Marklund’s own political, and explicitly feminist, point of view. In The Woman Detective (1995), Kathleen Gregory Klein questions the possibility of writing as a feminist in the crime genre. Marklund has accordingly been accused of presenting a form of “feminism light” in her novels, as well as in the feminist manifesto Det finns en särskild plats i helvetet för kvinnor som inte hjälper varandra (2005,There’s a special place in hell for women who don’t help each other), that she co-authored with Lotta Snickare.
Is it true that the genre holds no place for feminism? And what are the specific circumstances that make writing about these issues in Sweden in the late 1990s a successful undertake to begin with? In my paper, I will relate these questions to the story of the first crime novel by Liza Marklund, Sprängaren (1998, The Bomber).
Submit an update or correction to this abstract.