Re: RARA-AVIS: Re: Maj Sj÷wall and Per Wahl÷÷'s Martin Beck series

From: Patrick King (
Date: 24 Apr 2009

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    > Which just goes to prove my point. They are successful as cop novels precisely because any political commentary is so subliminal that it does not get in the way of the story.

    Well, I would have to disagree with this statement, especially the term "subliminal" . I re-read the whole series in chronological order a few years ago (in their original language - Swedish being my mother tongue) and I got more and more irritated with their not very nuanced social commentaries. At the end of the series, I found it almost froth-mouthed ranting. The early books still manage to focus on the main story, but the last ones find it rather hard to concentrate on the main plot. The side comments also tend to repeat themselves. I guess the authors run out of ammo, if not steam, towards the end.


    I wonder how closely the English translations follow the Swedish texts? Certainly the social commentary is clearly in the English but "froth-mouthed ranting"? Which book would you classify like that? I've read them all in English and find their bits of commentary thought provoking. I think the real problem Marxist philosophy faces is unmitigated human greed. If someone has a chance to steal something, sooner or later they do. So Marxism doesn't work. Of course nothing else works particularly well, either. I suppose it's fun to pretend we pick the leader, but I'm much to cynical to be fooled by any such notion.

    Patrick King







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