Georgia Perimeter College’s Dunwoody Campus continued the Sarah Larson Lecture Series in the Humanities on Monday, March 19, with a visit from Sara Karrholm, a Harvard University Fulbright Scholar. Karrholm focused on the Scandinavian crime fiction of Steig Larsson, creator of the Lisbeth Salander character, the fictional star of the popular “The Girl With the Dragon Tatoo” blockbuster.
Karrholm, who is also Scandinavian, lectured on “Victims, Avengers and Investigators, the Feminist Legacy in Scandinavian Crime Fiction.” She offered an interpretation of Larsson’s crime novel and cited the works of other Scandinavian crime authors, noting the fictional victims in these books are often women and serve as a metaphor for the exploitation of females in society.
“The dead women serve as proof emancipation has not yet reached its goal,” Karrholm said, adding that the male investigators in these novels do not relate to the crime scene as intimately as female investigators. “The body of the victim is a threat to the female investigator,” she said.
Karrholm said the popularity of female heroes, like Lisbeth Salander, represent the changing impact of women in Scandinavian society.
“Having Dr. Sara Karrholm visit GPC was a great honor,” said Louise McKinney, assistant professor of English, Dunwoody Campus. “As with last semester's presentation concerning the Twilight series (books and movies), this address concerning the ‘Millennium Series’ and Stieg Larsson’s ‘The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo’ proved to be a good draw for our students. I was glad to see that the event was well attended.”
Karrholm is spending spring of 2012 at Harvard University as a visiting Fulbright Scholar. Her research on popular fiction is mainly from a cultural studies perspective, focusing on gender issues as well as on the media and how literary genres work in a larger context than the merely textual.
The Sarah Larson Lecture Series in the Humanities is in honor of Sarah Larson, a professor emeriti at GPC who served for many years as the chair of the Dunwoody Campus Humanities Department but is now retired. This series focuses on culture, ethnicity and history and is supported through funding from the Georgia Humanities Council and the National Endowment for the Humanities and through appropriations from the Georgia General Assembly. All lectures in the series are free and open to the public.
Next in the series will be “A New ‘Green’ Day,” on Sept. 20, where Le Cordon Bleu Chef Amy Ponzoli will represent the Atlanta Chapter of Slow Food, a national organization that formed to counteract fast food and fast life, the disappearance of local food traditions, and people’s dwindling interest in the food they eat. Each presentation in the series is followed by a question-and-answer period.
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Georgia Perimeter College, the third largest institution of the University System of Georgia, serves approximately 27,000 students through four campuses and several sites in metro Atlanta. For additional information, visit www.gpc.edu.