The Life of Raphael Lemkin

  • Law Degree

    Law Degree
    Lemkin got his law degree in 1929, worked as a public prosecutor and taught family law in Warsaw. He prepared a draft of a law that would commit governments worldwide to intervene in instances of mass killings.
  • Lemkin Flees due to Nazi invasion

    After the Nazis invaded Poland in September 1939, he first fled to a small soviet town, and stayed with a jewish family whom he begged to leave. They did not listen, and he left to visit his family in eastern Poland, but they would not flee with him either.
  • Escape to Sweden

    He then escaped to Sweden in Feb 1940 to study the Nazi rule. He reunite with his brother, his brothers wife and their two sons. The rest of his family had been killed.
  • Professor at Duke University

    In 1941 he left for the US and taught at Duke University.
  • Axis Rule in Occupied Europe

    In 1944 he published Axis Rule in Occupied Europe which focused on the Nazis rules and regulations to commit genocide.
  • Noble Prize

    Lemkin spent the rest of his life lobbying governments and diplomats to make genocide an internationally recognized crime. He was the force behind the Genocide Convention and was nominated for the Nobel Prize 7 times between 1950 and 1959, however his work was unrecognized and he died in poverty in New York City.