31, c’est peu - Stig Dagerman (1923-1954), de Christophe Fourvel

5 min

31, c'est peu - Stig Dagerman (1923-1954), by Christophe Fourvel

With 31, c'est peu - Stig Dagerman (1923-1954), writer Christophe Fourvel revisits his very intimate relationship with the Swedish author, whose promising work was interrupted by his death aged just 31. This publication follows the author's visit to Sweden in 2021, with the support of the Institut Français' Stendhal programme, which is now the MIRA programme

© La Fosse aux Ours

A multifaceted body of work

Christophe Fourvel was born in Marseille in 1965. He has lived in the Doubs region for the past fifteen years, working at the Centre Régional du Livre de Franche-Comté in Besançon and collaborating with the Granit theatre and the Scène nationale de Belfort. He regularly runs writing workshops in various theatres and schools, as well as in prisons, psychiatric hospitals and long-term care centres. Since 2021, he has been director of the "Le Club des écrivains" collection published by Mediapop. He has published nearly twenty books, and created several programmes for France Culture. 


Writing for his friend

31, c'est peu - Stig Dagerman (1923-1954) looks back at one of the most mysterious and fascinating figures in Swedish literature. A writer with whom Christophe Fourvel has an almost visceral relationship, and in whose footsteps he decided to travel, going so far as to learn the language and live for a time in Stockholm. The result is an unclassifiable book, neither essay nor fiction, in which he revisits his intimate relationship with the man he refers to as "his friend". It is also a way of rediscovering the often dark and despairing work of the author of the infamous Our Need for Consolation is Insatiable (1952), and exploring how it resonates with us today. 


A literary career interrupted

Stig Dagerman, born in 1923, was a celebrated writer and journalist who made a profound impact on the Swedish literary scene in the 1940s. He published extensively and enjoyed great success between 1945 and 1949. But his doubts and his obsession with death and suicide endured. He soon stopped writing altogether, and in the autumn of 1954 took his own life. Much of his work has been translated into French, and Christophe Fourvel's recent book 31, c'est peu - Stig Dagerman (1923-1954) contains a short, previously unpublished text. 


A residence in Stockholm

Many years after he first encountered the work of this "young man for whom I have retained an immense tenderness and who continues to move me", Christophe Fourvel took advantage of a Stendhal grant to travel to Sweden and carry out a long-standing project: to write about Stig Dagerman. It was a residency at the height of lockdown, during which he also recorded many of the sounds that would serve as material for Mon ami Stig Dagerman, a radio programme broadcast this summer on France Culture. It includes material from his book, 31, c'est peu - Stig Dagerman (1923-1954), which went on sale in October.