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Lisbeth Salander

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Lisbeth Salander
Lisbeth Salander Bio Page Image
English Name
Lisbeth Salander
Alias
Wasp
Occupation
Computer hacker
Relationships
Appearances
All three novels
Swedish Actor
American Actor
Lisbeth Salander is the main character of the Millenium Trilogy. She posses a photographic memory and legendary hacking skills. She works as a freelancer for Dragan Armansky at Milton Security. She teams up with Mikael Blomkvist in The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo to solve the mystery surrounding Harriet Vanger's disappearance.
DT

Lisbeth as she in the english remake of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. Here she is portrayed by Rooney Mara.

Physical Description and PersonalityEdit

24 years old. "Salander was dressed for the day in a black T-shirt with a picture on it of E.T. with fangs, and the words "I AM ALSO AN ALIEN" - The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. She had on a black skirt that was frayed at the hem, a worn-out black, mid-length leather jacket, rivet belt, heavy Doc Marten boots, and a horizontally striped, green-and-red knee socks. She had put on make-up in a colour scheme that indicated she might be colourblind. In other words, she was exceptionally decked out.

Dragon tattoo

Salander's dragon tattoo

Lisbeth is described as being rail-thin, with short black hair, with a tattoo of a wasp on her neck. Mikael Blomkvist wonders if she might have asperger's syndrome because of her strange behavior. She has multiple piercings and has a boyish body with non-existent hips and small "child-like" breasts. In the films she has a large tattoo of a dragon on her back.

Lisbeth's characterization is extremely complex, showing at different times signs of great mental strength and emotional stability. Being nearly unable to empathasize with others, she is exceedingly anti-social, and feels no hesitation or guilt in performing great acts of violenece on others, particularly if her survival is at stake. However she does have some sympathy, particularly towards people she generally trusts such as Miriam Wu, her fellow hackers, and Mikael Blomkvist to some degree. Though a strong female character who perhaps thinks somewhat less of men than women, Lisbeth is not completely consistent with the feminist archtype, as she seeks out breast surgery in an attempt to feel better about her body image, silently seeking the approval of (or at least support of her own desire in) her bedfellows. She is a rapid analyst, her initial impressions of people often turning out to be correct, and a skilled hacker who breaks nearly every measure of digital security that she sets her mind to. Perhaps because of her insight into people's personalities, she either ignores or actively dislikes those whose traits she finds unpleasing. Partially due to her background, Lisbeth is very paranoid, trusting fewer than 3 people in the world and only then to a certain degree. Despite displaying a level of maturity, she still allows herself to be hurt by seeing Mickael with Erika, holding a grudge for over a year like a child. Though she begins to open up more, particularly to Annika in the third novel, the only people to whom she shows any confidence are Mickael and Miriam.

Early LifeEdit

From early childhood, Salander has a history of violence and vindictive behavior. Most of the incidences are triggered by attacks either to herself, or to the few people she cares for. At twelve, Salander threw gasoline on her father and set him on fire after he administered a vicious beating to her mother, causing her brain damage. As a repercussion of the incident, her father almost died, but managed to survive, but with severe scarring. She was declared a danger to herself and others by the court at age thirteen, and sent for treatment at the St. Stefan's Psychiatric Clinic for Children in Uppsala. She refused to talk with psychologists, police, teachers, and social workers. The one person that she would speak to was Advokat Holger Palmgren who was assigned as her trustee until she came of age. At fifteen, it was decided that she wasn't a danger to herself and was released from St. Stefans and placed with a foster family. After running away from her first few families, Palmgren explained that she would be placed back in the psychiatric clinic which convinced Salander not to run away from the next family. At eighteen, she proved to be uncooperative, disdainful of most authority figures, and frequently fought with others. After a particularly violent altercation with a man that attacked her, the court psychiatrists felt she would be safer institutionalized. At the court hearing, Palmgren acted as her legal representation and worked hard to convince the court that she was not dangerous, and should instead be put under a guardianship. Palmgren, went from being her trustee to her guardian. Their relationship grew to be one of the most important in Salander's life.

The Girl with the Dragon TattooEdit

Noomi
At the beginning of Dragon Tattoo, Salander is hired by Milton Security to do a background investigation of disgraced journalist Mikael Blomkvist, on Henrik Vanger's behalf. Vanger's attorney, Dirch Frode, demands to speak with the person who wrote the investigation to get their personal beliefs on the matter and he is surprised when he meets Salander. She tells him that she believes that there is more to Blomkvist's trial than was revealed and Frode asks her to continue her work, except training her eye on Blomkvist's nemesis, Hans-Erik Wennerström.

{C {C}{C Salander learns she has a new guardian, Nils Bjurman, since her previous guardian, Holger Palmgren, had a stroke and cannot continue with his duties (A guardian is someone appointed to protect individuals unable to take care of themselves. They oversee their finances and personal life. Their role is similar to a parole officer but they have complete control and can send them back to a mental institution at will). "She was not afraid of Bjurman-Salander was rarely afraid of anyone or anything. On the other hand, she felt uncomfortable with this new guardian. His predecessor, Advokat Holger Palmgren, had been of an entirely different ilk: courteous and kind." Bjurman's first order of business as Salander's new guardian is to get access to all of her accounts. Previously, Palmgren had allowed Lisbeth to manage her own finances and served as more of a support system, but Bjurman wants complete control over Salander's life.

Lisbeth

Lisbeth's new guardian

Their first few meetings go alright, but when Lisbeth's laptop is destroyed she is forced to go to Bjurman to ask for her money. He uses the opportunity to teach Salander how their guardianship will go. He teaches her sword swallowing. Salander, not being the sort to go to the police on any matter comes up with her own plan to take care of the situation. She sets up a hidden camera in her bag, hoping to catch Bjurman in the act. She visited his home to receive money for food but instead of demanding for oral sex, she is horrified to find out that Bjurman intends to rape her. He ties her down to his bed, gags her and stabs her buttocks with his mansword. She is able to get this on video, however, but at a great cost of not being able to walk or take a proper shit for the next few days. Salander comes up with another plan, she asks for more money to pay her rent and is able to subdue Bjurman by shocking him with a taser. She them ties him to the floor, destroys his anus with an iron dildo and tattoos him.

The Girl Who Played with FireEdit

The Girl Who Played With Fire begins with Salander returning to Sweden after traveling for a year. Shortly afterward, Salander is falsely implicated in the murder of three people — Bjurman and two of Blomkvist's colleagues. The frame-up is in fact an elaborate conspiracy between her biological father, former Soviet spy Alexander Zalachenko, and the Section, an illegal faction within Säpo, the Swedish Security Service, whose members had protected him after he defected from the USSR. Zalachenko had been a high-ranking member of the GRU, and his defection was regarded by Säpo as an intelligence windfall, thus leading to the Section covering up his subsequent illegal activities. Zalachenko had his son (and Salander's half-brother) Ronald Neidermann kill both Blomkvist's colleagues, who were investigating his prostitution business, and Bjurman, whose attempts to get revenge on Salander were attracting too much attention. The Section then falsely incriminates Salander to cover up their complicity in the concealment of Zalachenko's crimes. Blomkvist tries to help Salander, even though she herself wants nothing to do with him. By the end of the novel, he follows her to Zalachenko's farm, where he finds her seriously injured after a confrontation with Zalachenko and Neidermann. He then calls an ambulance, saving her life by having her air-lifted to a hospital. The novel also expands upon Salander's childhood. She is portrayed as having been an extremely bright but asocial child who would violently lash out at anyone who threatened or picked on her. This was in part the result of a troubled home life; Zalachenko repeatedly abused her mother, but escaped punishment because the Section perceived his value to the Swedish State as being more important than her mother's civil rights. Zalachenko also indirectly destroyed Salander's relationship with her sister, Camilla, who repressed her memories of the abuse and saw her father as gentle and loving. One day when Salander was 12, Zalachenko beat her mother so badly that she sustained permanent brain damage. In retaliation, Salander set her father on fire, leaving him permanently disfigured and in chronic pain. The Section, fearing this would lead to their exposure, had the girl declared legally insane and sent to a Children's Psychiatric Hospital in Uppsala. While there, she was placed under the direct surveillance of psychologist Dr. Peter Teleborian, who had earlier conspired with the Section to have her declared insane. During her stay at the hospital, Teleborian put her in restraints for the most trivial of infractions — mostly to vent his repressed pedophilic urges. Teleborian declared her legally incompetent in a conspiracy with the Section, in order to make sure no one would ever believe her accounts of what they had done. They were also instrumental in appointing Bjurman, a lawyer in their employ, her guardian after Palmgren's stroke.

The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's NestEdit

In the third and final novel of the series - The Girl Who Kicked the Hornets' Nest - Salander is arrested for GBH on motorcycle gang leader Carl-Magnus Lundin (aka Magge) and attempted murder of Zalachenko while she recuperates in hospital. Zalachenko, who is a patient in the same hospital, is murdered by one of the Section, who then tries to kill Salander; fortunately, her lawyer (Annika Giannini, Blomkvist's sister) had barred the door upon hearing a disturbance. Due to her deep-seated mistrust of authority, Salander refuses at first to cooperate in any way with her defence, relying instead on her friends in Sweden's hacker community. They eventually help Blomkvist discover the full scope of the Section's conspiracy, which he strives to publish at the risk of his own life. Salander eventually writes, and passes to Giannini, an exact description of the sexual abuse she suffered at Bjurman's hands, but written in such a way as to make it sound astounding so as to mislead the prosecution. At her trial, Salander is defiant and uncooperative with the prosecution. The prosecuting counsel uses testimony from Teleborian, appearing as their principal witness, to depict her as insane and in need of long-term care; in particular, Teleborian dismisses Salander's account of Bjurman's abuse as a fantasy. Annika then destroys Teleborian's credibility by introducing the recording of Salander's rape, and adduces extensive evidence of the Section's plot, published in Millennium that morning by Blomkvist. At the same time as Annika starts questioning Teleborian, the 10 members of the Section are arrested and charged with a long list of crimes. Salander's trial is briefly interrupted to permit the arrest of Teleborian for possession of child pornography, which was uncovered by Salander's fellow hackers. Salander is set free the same day, her name cleared. After she is cleared of the charges, Salander receives word that, as Zalachenko's daughter, she is entitled to a small inheritance and one of his properties. She refuses the money, but goes to a disused factory she has inherited. There, she is attacked by Niedermann, who has been hiding there since shortly after the confrontation with Salander at Zalachenko's farm. She nails his feet to the floor, and then calls a gang who wants him dead to tell them of his whereabouts. Before they arrive to kill Niedermann, she contacts the police. That night, Blomkvist shows up at her door, and the two reconcile.

RelationshipsEdit

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