Lisbeth Salander and photographic memory

In The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, Mikael Blomkvist discovers that Lisbeth Salander has a “photographic memory.” Her memory comes in handy on multiple occasions throughout the Millennium Trilogy. Worth noting is the scientific debate about whether anything like photographic memory actually exists. Those who do believe that it exists don’t usually believe that it is hereditary, although a recent study has suggested that extraordinary memory for recognizing faces is a heritable trait. (In The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest, the reader learns that Lisbeth’s father is also said to have a photographic memory.) Photographic memory is also sometimes associated with autism, particularly with people who experience Asperger’s Syndrome. At various points in time, Larsson described Lisbeth as “suffering from Asperger’s.” Photographic memory is also prevalent in crime and science fiction, which Larsson is known to have enjoyed.

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