Håndbog for unge antirasister

A voice in the public debate

Children can tolerate hearing about anything, as long as it is told properly. This is how our colleagues at publishing house Cappelen Damm in Norway work when they find voices that have something to say and important stories to tell children. 

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How do you make a baby, Women in battle and Handbook for young antiracists are some of the titles from Norway’s largest children’s book publisher Cappelen Damm that have sparked debate, attention and become bestsellers both locally in Norway and internationally. 

“We work to find voices that have something to say when we select and launch new children’s books. As Norway’s largest children’s book publisher, we have both a duty and an opportunity to be a voice in the public debate,” says Ragnfrid Trohaug, Head of Publishing for Children and Youth. 

The publisher’s mindset is that there are no topics that children cannot be introduced to in book form. It is all about how you communicate. And experience shows that children and young people are very interested in and need help to understand the complex society we live in.

Books that evoke a response are resonating. With its message of dialogue as an important tool in the fight against racism the Handbook for young antiracists has been translated into several languages and published in several countries. The book rights have also been sold to the US, and author Tinashe Williamson hopes the handbook will reach American schoolchildren.  

“Having a voice and being able to contribute to changing attitudes in a country like the US is extremely important to me as a Norwegian writer and person of colour. I hope they will read the book in school. That would be my dream,” she says.

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