Yohan Shanmugaratnam

We still breathe

Vi puster fortsatt

This book is a time capsule. About racism and roots and the transformation both me and Norway have gone through over the last decades. From 9/11 to the right-wing terrorism of Anders Breivik at Utøya in 2011, to the killing of George Floyd. It’s also a story about forbidden love, friendship and hope. Do whatever you want with it. The rest is up to you.

Shanmugaratnam yohan manifest

‘In a genuine, funny and thought-provoking story about his family’s life, Yohan Shanmugaratnam connects his own multicultural experiences in Sri Lanka, Japan and Norway to overreaching world events. Through exploring the complexity in a multicultural upbringing, Shanmugaratnam reveals that being “the other” is always a product of the broader surroundings.’

- Zeshan Shakar, writer

‘A short masterpiece on racism.’

- Hilde Østby, writer
Shanmugaratnam yohan adrian nielsen hoyde2
Photo: Adrian Nielsen

Yohan Shanmugaratnam is a Norwegian journalist and non-fiction writer. His first book Vi puster fortsatt (We still breathe) (2020) about racism and roots was listed as one of the ten best books of the year by the newspaper Aftenposten (the second largest newspaper in Norway). In 2021 Shanmugaratnam and photographer Line Ørnes Søndergaard published the book Bruddet (The Split) at Forlaget Press. The documentary about a town in England during Brexit won the Bookstore Association’s prize for best non-fiction. His latest book is Hjertet i to (Heart in two), a critically acclaimed portrait of the Norwegian rap group Karpe. It was published by Bonnier Norsk Forlag in 2022. Shanmugaratnam, who has a MA degree in human geography from the University of Oslo, has worked for the daily Klassekampen since 2004. He was born in Jaffna, Sri Lanka, where his father is from, and spent parts of his childhood in his mother’s native country Japan.