The Woman Who Exposed British Concentration Camps



Emily Hobhouse played a crucial role in exposing some of the worst atrocities of the British Empire, bringing into public view the shocking conditions of the concentration camps set up in South Africa during the Second Boer War.

A fierce campaigner, she launched a sensational attack on the British parliament in 1901, in the middle of one of the most controversial wars in the country’s history. “The picture of apathy and impatience displayed here, which refused to lend an ear to undeserved misery, contrasted sadly with the scenes of misery in South Africa, still fresh in my mind. No barbarity in South Africa was as severe as the bleak cruelty of an apathetic parliament.”

During the Second Boer War, British forces rounded up Boer men, women and children from the South African countryside and placed them in concentration camps. The measure, which particularly targeted farmers, was…

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