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Haven in Africa


"Haven in Africa is a sobering account of attempts – collective and individual – to seek a haven for European Jews fleeing Nazism in Northern Rhodesia. Frank Shapiro’s vivid narrative combines compassion, historical analysis, archival revelations and counter-factual thinking. He unfolds a little known chapter in European History, African History and in the History of the Jews, and in the history of the British Empire demonstrating their unacknowledged interconnectedness. As we currently reflect on the potential of global humanitarian efforts to save lives, on bureaucratic structures and their limitations, Frank Shapiro’s conclusions are of troubling relevance. This is a poignant chapter in twentieth century history."

Professor Miri Rubin, Department of History, Queen Mary- University of London


"Shapiro challenges a conclusion that has become a near consensus among Holocaust historians: that by 1939 there was no place open for large numbers of German Jews to go. He shows that there was at least one major exception, the British Crown Protectorate of Northern Rhodesia. He bases his case on extensive archival materials and oral histories. Here is a frustratingly sad story of an opportunity missed, partly out of malice and partly out of inattention. The inattention seems to have come from a most unexpected source."

Karl A. Schleunes, Professor of History The University of North Carolina at Greensboro


"I have just completed reading Haven in Africa, which I found very enlightening. For seven years, I have been involved in teaching a multi-disciplinary course on the Holocaust, but this is the first time I have heard of the Northern Rhodesian efforts...Thank you for having written the book and for making yourself available for comments."

Kenneth A. Wolkon, Ph.D. Professor of Psychology, Bridgewater State College, MA


"Thank you for sending me a copy of Frank Shapiro's 'Heaven in Africa'. I have started reading it and it is extremely interesting."

The Lord Janner of Braunstone, Q.C. President Commonwealth Jewish Council


"Haven in Africa provides an important missing link in understanding the moral dilemmas and perplexities involved on the one hand in saving Jews, while on the other hand abandoning them to their fate."

Jewish South African SIG Newsletter - March 2003

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"Shapiro emphasizes that Northern Rhodesia 'never closed its gates to the arriving Jews' in contrast to a 'conspiracy of silence' on the part of the Anglo-Jewish leaders."

Anna Charin: Jewish Chronicle August 22, 2003

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 "Shapiro deserves credit for chasing the documentation, judiciously examining responses, and clarifying the debate...his pioneering and carefully researched account will be appreciated." (Professor Milton Shain)

Journal of Southern African Studies Vol.29 No.3 pp.810-811 September 2003

To read full article Press Here