Aslak Sira Myhre

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Aslak Sira Myhre (2010)

Aslak Sira Myhre (born 28 May 1973 in Stavanger) is a Norwegian culture administrator. Since 2014 he is director of the National Library of Norway. Myhre has been a leftwing politician, and was for a period leader of the former party Red Electoral Alliance (RV). In the local election in Oslo in 2015 he was listed for Red, the party succeeding Red Electoral Alliance since 2007, however not on top, and he did not get a seat.

Myhre's parents were both active on the political left and his father Eldar Myhre is a known trade union chairman at Aker Kværner. Aslak was very active in student demonstrations at the University of Bergen during the 1990s and sat on the university board in 1996.[1] He was the party leader of Red Electoral Alliance between 1997 and 2003, and sat in the city council in his home city Stavanger between 1999 and 2003. He was the top candidate for Storting for Rogaland in the 1997 election and Oslo in the 2001 election, but his party failed to win any seats.

Leaving national politics, he became an executive of !Les, an association to stimulate children and youth to read more. Myhre has also worked as a football journalist for both the Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation and Klassekampen. In 2006 he started as director for the House of Literature in Oslo. The House of Literature opened in 2007, it is Europes largest and has more than 250.000 visitors annually. In 2014 he was appointed director of the National Library.

For his work with !les and The House of Literature, Myhre in 2008 received "Eckbos legaters Kulturpris". Myhre has published several books, and has published articles in The Guardian and The Washington Post in the aftermath of the 2011 Norway attacks.[2][3][4]

He is married to current editor-in-chief of Samtiden, Cathrine Sandnes.


He was in 2002 convicted to 90 days in prison for failing to report for national military service. On appeal in 2003 his sentence was made suspended on probation.[5] His case was controversial since Myhre had only political objection to serve national service due to Norwegian participation in NATO's out of area involvement and his refusal to classify himself as having objections to serve military national service. His objections were neither religious, moral nor ethical, which are the legal requirements for being granted civilian national service under Norwegian National Service laws.


  1. ^ Eidsvik, Øyvind Lefdal (9 February 2005). "Utstudert: Knut Arild Hareide". Studvest (in Norwegian). Archived from the original on 31 August 2005. Retrieved 2007-11-28.
  2. ^ Myhre, Aslak Sira, The Guardian (24 July 2011). Norway attacks: Norway's tragedy must shake Europe into acting on extremism
  3. ^ Myhre, Aslak Sira, The Guardian (30 November 2011). Anders Breivik's hatred does not come from a delusional mind
  4. ^ Myhre, Aslak Sira, The Washington Post (July 29, 2011). Time for Norway to face its Islamophobia
  5. ^ "Sira Myhre slipper fengsel". Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation (in Norwegian). 22 April 2003. Retrieved 2008-09-27.
Political offices
Preceded by
Jørn Magdahl
Leader of Red Electoral Alliance
Succeeded by
Torstein Dahle