The official companion book to the exhibition: Great Escapes
Millions of people were held captive all over the world during the Second World War, including those in the armed services, who were captured and became prisoners of war, as well as many ordinary citizens, who were classified as enemy aliens - potentially dangerous foreigners - and found themselves interned or deported overseas. The prisoners had hugely varied experiences based on their nationality, race, where they were captured and whether they were in the services or a civilian internee. For almost all, physical escape was impossible. But for many, plotting to break out of their camp or finding a form of escapism through other means – music, art, writing or falling in love – were sources of solace, hope and sometimes resistance.
Captives, collated by experts from The National Archives, presents a variety of visual materials such as maps, photographs and drawings, alongside eye-witness accounts of capture and attempted escapes, to give a true picture of how it was possible to survive mentally and physically in captivity.