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Bosse Lindquist: Why do you Jan Myrdal demean individuals?

Jan Myrdal's new book ”A second grace” is according to himself a rannsakande of his life. He is looking for ”beyond the skamgränsen scale self.” For this is hailed he of influential authors like Karl Ove Knausgård in marketing: ”Myrdal's like that at all costs seek the truth – I have never read anything like it.”

But is it really knowledge and truth He is looking for? The author begins his text with a discussion of the memory fraudulence. But soon abandons he problematiserandet around fantasy and reality, and goes to the cocksure attack against two of its former, and now dead, their wives – both named. One – his third in succession – should have given him gonorrhea. The second – his first wife – should have been with other men than himself during the time they were married to each other.

Jan Myrdal claims that she herself would be called a ”slut” and that her mother said that she bedde themselves ”slampigt” already as a teenager. He also claims that she offered herself to the strangers – sat in the truck and demonstrated the organ for other road users. Further, now through his latter-day web browsing will, should he have discovered that she had acted in a nude model as a teenager. The shape of the model's bosom helps to Jan Myrdal believes himself to be able to identify the model as his first wife, according to him, is a woman's ”lower face... as individual as the upper.”

Read more: ”Jan Myrdal, don't save on the details in his book,” writes Jan Eklund in his review of ”A second grace”

to solka down the memory of two individuals, presented completely without any other evidence than his own statements, leads to interesting questions. You can write anything about a named dead person, who cannot defend themselves? If we posit, just for a second that the women were around He would have been sexualfixerade and infidels – has this interest so that it justifies their legacy demonised in this way?

The second question is equally important: what if it is so that He remember wrong? Or, perhaps, even work on their memories in order to better fit how he would like to, the reality was?

In texts from the late 1940s formulated the Jan Myrdal what would be his lifetime project: to create ”fabulerande realism” – the mix of reality and poem. During the fifties, he tried to hit through by writing novels partly based on real people, including his closest. The success did not materialize, however.

Bosse Lindquist. Photo: Ronnie Ritterland

”Report from a chinese village”. With the took He plunge, and claimed that the fabulerade was a reality. He described his work as if it were a scientific, anthropological study based on farmers ' real-life experiences, mediated by their own words. In reality, this book came to by Myrdal and were escorted by the government's representatives, state guides, and interpreters, to a truth which was the official.

the Village he lived in was approved by the government – previously friendly western ”Kinavänner” had been right there. All the farmers said was filtered by the regime's translators. And the farmers knew that he was the guest of the party, and what it could mean if they are just a moment was perceived as dissident – labour camps, prison, death.

He himself admits that it was not particularly important for him to reproduce exactly what the farmers said. He didn't bother to record the calls. Instead he sat on the evenings and mixed imagination and memory: ”I increased the color and added highlights where needed. With partitagande.” (DN 27/10 1987).

Read more: Johar Bendjelloul meets Jan Myrdal

Liu Lin found In its författarskaps main method – that of romance together real people's deeds, thoughts and stories for their own purposes. He supported Mao and the regime's official propagandabild was in the mouth of named farmers – as if it all was true. Nothing mentioned about how Mao's policies led to mass starvation 1959-1961. Instead, it talks about korrigeringsläger that is so pleasant that the prisoners who escaped voluntarily return to them. Because He was one of the few western observers with a titthåll in Mao's China, so was his propaganda of the huge international spread.

In a similar way, Jan Myrdal, time and again distorted the truth not only about China, but also about life in communist Albania and Cambodia. The question is whether he can be expected to be a more trustworthy man of independent mind when it comes to privacy?

I ask myself how a publishing house Norstedts reasoning when they in spite of Jan Myrdal's earlier brushing on the truth allows him to spread the slander of the individuals – the women in his life – despite the fact that his only evidence is their own memory and imagination? Have you taken note of metoo? Refers to the Norstedts publishing house to continue with the degrading depictions of the deceased female individuals – people without the ability to defend themselves?

is an icon for a smaller part of the Swedish left – and, it seems, as a alfahanne and patriarch get kick on the women he shared his life with – so it does not mean that this slander has a place in the public sphere. Especially in our present day, where the demagogues from left and right undermine respect for the facts, so must the difference between truth and lies, reality and fantasy, constantly be defended.

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