Author to Share Tales of a Jewish Family’s Life in China

Ester Shifren

Ester Shifren

Author, musician, artist and international speaker Ester Shifren will discuss her book, “Hiding in a Cave of Trunks: A Prominent Jewish Family’s Century in Shanghai and Internment in a WWII POW Camp,” during a special presentation on Friday, Nov. 8, at California State University, Northridge.

In addition to talking about her book, China-born Shifren will share some of the cultural treasures and tribulations associated with the ethnically diverse population of Shanghai, a city that is often referred to as the “Paris of the East.”

Her presentation, part of a luncheon hosted by CSUN’s Friends of the Oviatt Library, is scheduled to take place at 11:30 a.m. in the Lambs Lounge of the Orange Grove Bistro, located at the southeast corner of the campus near Zelzah Avenue and Nordhoff Street.

Shifren spent her early years in Shanghai, Hong Kong and Israel. She served two years in Israel’s army, married a man from South Africa and subsequently spent 36 years living in South Africa before moving to Canada. Shifren immigrated to the United States in 1997 and now lives and works in Los Angeles.

“Hiding in a Cave of Trunks” explores the lives of several generations of Shifren’s family, from its privileged life in Shanghai, China, to years of detention as prisoners of war during World War II. A limited number of copies of her book will be available for purchase and signing following her luncheon presentation.

The price of the luncheon is $18 per person and reservations are required. To make a reservation, call (818) 677-2638. Persons with disabilities needing assistance and deaf and hard-of-hearing persons needing interpreters, call the above number in advance for arrangements.

CSUN’s Friends of the Oviatt Library was founded so that members of the community could become active participates in the library at California State University, Northridge. For more information about the group, visit its website at

California State University, Northridge’s Delmar T. Oviatt Library has more than 1.4 million volumes. It also subscribes to nearly 59,000 online journals, more than 2,300 print journals, more than 200 online databases and nearly 275,000 e-books. It has an extensive audio and video collection, numbering nearly 18,000. The library’s online resources are heavily used, with almost 13 million visits to its webpages and databases annually; and a yearly gate count of more than 1.6 million patrons. It also has an extensive collection of rare books, manuscripts, documents, photographs, artifacts and other archival materials. The Oviatt Library serves as the main research facility in the San Fernando Valley.

For more information about Library events and hours, visit its website or call (818) 677- 2285.