Study Guide

Advokat Nils Erik Bjurman in The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo

By Stieg Larsson

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Advokat Nils Erik Bjurman

Bjurman is a villain of the first order. When Salander's original guardian has a stroke, Bjurman becomes her new guardian. Immediately he starts messing with her. First he takes away her bank account and puts her on an allowance. Then he forces her to perform oral sex in exchange for the release of her own money so she can buy a computer. He thinks, "This is better than a whore. She gets paid with her own money" (11.187).

Salander can't find any dirt on him using her usual methods, so she uses herself as bait, hoping to get him on film raping her. Unfortunately, Salander doesn't read Bjurman correctly. He shows her who he really is. He holds her captive and rapes her for about eight hours. She does get the whole thing on tape, though, and she returns to take control of him, using the recording as blackmail. She also gives him a nifty tattoo:

The message was written in all caps over five lines that covered his belly, from his nipples to just above his genitals: I AM A SADISTIC PIG, A PERVERT, AND A RAPIST. (14.93)

Unfortunately, we haven't seen the last of Nils Bjurman. He shows up in The Girl Who Played With Fire, nasty as ever. Now a question: Do you think Bjurman gets what he deserved from Salander? Or, does she become as bad as him by doing to him what he did to her? How much of her revenge is motivated by self defense and practicality, and how much by sheer vengeance?

Advokat Nils Erik Bjurman in The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo Study Group

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