Ronald Segal

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Ronald Segal
Ronald Michael Segal

(1932-07-14)14 July 1932
South Africa
Died23 February 2008(2008-02-23) (aged 75)
EducationSea Point Boys' High School
Alma materCape Town University; Trinity College, Cambridge
Occupation(s)Activist, writer and editor

Ronald Michael Segal (14 July 1932 – 23 February 2008) was a South African activist, writer and editor, founder of the anti-apartheid magazine Africa South and the Penguin African Library.[1]


Ronald Segal was born on 14 July 1932, into a rich South African Jewish family. He was educated at Sea Point Boys' High School. After failing to gain entry to Oxford University, he studied at Cape Town University and then Trinity College, Cambridge.

Returning to South Africa in 1956, he founded the anti-apartheid magazine Africa South. After the 1960 Sharpeville Massacre, he went into exile with Oliver Tambo, and settled in England, continuing his anti-apartheid political activity and pursuing activity as a writer.[1] Segal's best-known work is The State of the World Atlas (first edition, 1981), which he co-founded with Michael Kidron, another South African-born Jew, who shared most of his political views.[2]

After Segal was unbanned from South Africa, he visited the country several times, receiving a hero's welcome on stage alongside Mandela, Tambo and Slovo in 1992. Segal died on 23 February 2008.[1]


  • Tokolosh of the Townships, 1960 [3]
  • Political Africa: A Who’s Who of Personalities and Parties, 1961
  • African Profiles, 1962
  • Into Exile, 1963
  • Sanctions against South Africa, 1964
  • The Anguish of India, 1965
  • The Race War: The Worldwide Conflict of Races, 1966
  • America’s Receding Future
  • The Americans: A Conflict of Creed and Reality, 1969
  • The Struggle Against History, 1971
  • Whose Jerusalem? The Conflicts of Israel, 1973
  • Decline and Fall of the American Dollar, 1974
  • Southern Africa: New Politics of Revolution, 1976
  • Leon Trotsky: a biography, 1979
  • (with Michael Kidron) The State of the World Atlas, 1981
  • The Black Diaspora, 1995
  • Islam's Black Slaves: The Other Black Diaspora, 2001


  1. ^ a b c Herbstein, Denis (26 February 2008). "Obituary | Ronald Segal". The Guardian.
  2. ^ Kidron, Michael; Ronald Segal (1981). The State of the World Atlas. London: Pluto Press. p. 3.