The Nobel Peace Prize (Swedish and Norwegian: Nobels fredspris) is the name of one of five Nobel Prizes bequeathed by the Swedish industrialist and inventor Alfred Nobel. According to Nobel's will, the Peace Prize should be awarded "to the person who shall have done the most or the best work for fraternity between the nations, for the abolition or reduction of standing armies and for the holding and promotion of peace congresses."
The Peace Prize is awarded annually in Oslo, the capital of Norway. The actual prize always is presented on the 10th of December, the anniversary of the death of Nobel. The Norwegian king is in attendance. "In Oslo, the Chairman of the Norwegian Nobel Committee presents the Nobel Peace Prize in the presence of the King of Norway. Under the eyes of a watching world, the Nobel Laureate receives three things: a diploma, a medal and a document confirming the prize amount" ("What the Nobel Laureates Receive"). For the past decade, the Nobel Peace Prize Ceremony at the Oslo City Hall has been followed the next day by the Nobel Peace Prize Concert, which is broadcast to over 150 countries and more than 450 million households around the world. The Concert has received worldwide fame and the participation of top celebrity hosts and performers. The selection of Nobel Peace Prize winners sometimes causes controversy, as the list of winners includes people who formerly used violent methods of problem-solving, but then later made exceptional concessions to non-violence in the attempt to achieve peace.
Nobel died in 1896 and did not leave an explanation for choosing peace as a prize category. The categories for chemistry and physics were obvious choices as he was a trained chemical engineer. The reason behind the peace prize is less clear. Some have said it was Nobel's way to compensate for developing destructive forces (Nobel's inventions included dynamite and ballistite). However, none of his explosives, except for ballistite, were used in any war during his lifetime, although the Irish Republican Brotherhood, an Irish nationalist organisation, did carry out dynamite attacks in the 1880s.
The Norwegian Parliament appoints the Norwegian Nobel Committee, which selects the Laureate for the Peace Prize. The Committee chairman, currently Dr. Ole Danbolt Mjøs, awards the Prize itself. At the time of Alfred Nobel's death Sweden and Norway were in a personal union in which the Swedish government was solely responsible for foreign policy, and the Norwegian Parliament was responsible only for Norwegian domestic policy. Alfred Nobel never explained why he wanted a Norwegian rather than Swedish body to award the Peace Prize. As a consequence, many people have speculated about Nobel's intentions. For instance, Nobel may have wanted to prevent the manipulation of the selection process by foreign powers, and as Norway did not have any foreign policy, the Norwegian government could not be influenced.
Nominations for the Prize may be made by a broad array of qualified individuals, including former recipients, members of national assemblies and congresses, university professors (in certain disciplines), international judges, and special advisors to the Prize Committee. In some years as many as 199 nominations have been received. The Committee keeps the nominations secret and asks that nominators do the same. Over time many individuals have become known as "Nobel Peace Prize Nominees", but this designation has no official standing. Nominations from 1901 to 1955, however, have been released in a database. When the past nominations were released it was discovered that Adolf Hitler was nominated in 1939 by Erik Brandt, a member of the Swedish Parliament. Brandt retracted the nomination after a few days. Other infamous nominees included Joseph Stalin and Benito Mussolini. However, since nomination requires only support from one qualified person (e.g., a history professor), these unusual nominations do not represent the opinions of the Nobel committee itself.
Unlike the other Nobel Prizes, which recognize completed scientific or literary accomplishment, the Nobel Peace Prize may be awarded to persons or organizations that are in the process of resolving a conflict or creating peace. As some such processes have failed to create lasting peace, some Peace Prizes appear questionable in hindsight. For example, the awards given to Theodore Roosevelt, Shimon Peres, Yitzhak Rabin, Yasser Arafat, Lê Ðức Thọ and Henry Kissinger were particularly controversial and criticized; the Kissinger-Thọ award prompted two dissenting Committee members to resign.
In 2005, the Nobel Peace Center opened. It serves to present the Laureates, their work for peace, and the ongoing problems of war and conflict around the world.
- For more details on this topic, see Nobel Prize controversies.
The Nobel Peace Prize has sparked controversy throughout its history. The Norwegian Parliament appoints the Peace Prize Committee, but pacifist critics argue that the same Parliament has pursued partisan military aims by ratifying membership in NATO in 1949, by hosting NATO troops, and by leasing ports and territorial waters to US ballistic missile submarines in 1983. However, the Parliament has no say in the award issue. A member of the Committee cannot at the same time be a member of the Parliament, and the Committee includes former members from all major parties, including those parties that oppose NATO membership.
A particular claimed weakness of the Nobel Peace Prize awarding process is the swiftness of recognition. The scientific and literary Nobel Prizes are usually issued in retrospect, often two or three decades after the awarded achievement, thus representing a time-proven confirmation and balance of approval by the established academic community, seldom contradicted by newer developments. In contrast, the Nobel Peace Prize at times takes the form of summary judgment, being issued in the same year as or the year immediately following the political act. Some commentators have suggested that to award a peace prize on the basis of unquantifiable contemporary opinion is unjust or possibly erroneous, especially as many of the judges cannot themselves be said to be impartial observers. In pro-democracy struggles, it may be said that the 'real' peace-makers may not be recognized for their long-term or subtle approaches. However, others have pointed to the uniqueness of the Peace Prize in that its high profile can often focus world attention on particular problems and possibly aid in the peace-efforts themselves.
On closer inspection, the peace-laureates often have a lifetime's history of working at and promoting humanitarian issues, as in the examples of German medic Albert Schweitzer (1952 laureate), Dr. Martin Luther King, an African-American civil rights activist (1964 laureate); Mother Teresa, a Roman Catholic missionary nun (1979 laureate); and Aung San Suu Kyi, a Buddhist nonviolent pro-democracy activist (1991 laureate). Still others are selected for tireless efforts, as in the examples of Jimmy Carter and Mohamed ElBaradei. Others, even today, are quite controversial, due to the recipient's political activity, as in the case of Henry Kissinger (1973 laureate), Menachem Begin and Anwar Sadat (1978 laureates), or Yitzhak Rabin and Yasser Arafat (1994 laureates).
A widely discussed criticism of the peace-prize are the notable omissions, namely the failure to award individuals with widely recognized contributions to peace. The list includes Mahatma Gandhi, Pope John XXIII, Pope John Paul II, Steve Biko, Raphael Lemkin, Herbert Hoover, César Chávez, Jose Figueres Ferrer, and Oscar Romero. In particular, the omission of the Indian leader Gandhi has been widely discussed, including public statements by the various members of Nobel Committee. It has been acknowledged by the committee that Gandhi was nominated in 1937, 1938, 1939, 1947 and, finally, a few days before he was murdered in January 1948. The omission has been publicly regretted by later members of the Nobel Committee. In 1948, the year of Gandhi's death, the Nobel Committee declined to award a prize on the ground that "there was no suitable living candidate" that year. Later, when the Dalai Lama was awarded the Peace Prize in 1989, the chairman of the committee said that this was "in part a tribute to the memory of Mahatma Gandhi." In most cases, the omissions resulted in part from the provision in Alfred Nobel's will that only living people could receive the prize.
Research by anthropologist David Stoll into Rigoberta Menchú, the 1992 recipient, revealed some fabrications in her biography, "Me llamo Rigoberta Menchú y así me nació la conciencia" (My Name is Rigoberta Menchú and this is how my Conscience was Born), translated into English as "I". Menchú later admitted changing some details about her background. After the initial controversy, the Nobel Committee dismissed calls to revoke her Nobel prize because of the reported falsifications. Professor Geir Lundestad, the secretary of the Committee, said her prize "was not based exclusively or primarily on the autobiography".. According to the Nobel Committee, "Stoll approves of her Nobel prize and has no question about the picture of army atrocities which she presents. He says that her purpose in telling her story the way she did 'enabled her to focus international condemnation on an institution that deserved it, the Guatemalan army'.
Nobel Laureates in Peace
|Year||Laureate(s)||Nationality||Work for which cited (Citations)|
|1901*||Jean Henri Dunant||Switzerland||Founder, Red Cross; Geneva Convention, Human rights.|
|1901*||Frédéric Passy||France||Founder and President, Société d'arbitrage entre les Nations.|
Charles Albert Gobat
|Switzerland||Honorary secretaries, Permanent International Peace Bureau in Berne.|
|1903||William Randal Cremer||United Kingdom||Secretary, International Arbitration League.|
|1904||Institut de Droit International||Belgium|
|1905||Bertha Sophie Felicitas Baronin von Suttner||Austria-Hungary/ Czech||Honorary President, Permanent International Peace Bureau.|
|1906||Theodore Roosevelt||United States||President of the United States; peace treaty collaborations (brokering the Treaty of Portsmouth ending the Russo-Japanese War)|
|1907*||Ernesto Teodoro Moneta||Italy||President, Lombard League of Peace|
|1907*||Louis Renault||France||Professor of International Law|
|1908*||Klas Pontus Arnoldson||Sweden||Founder, Swedish Peace and Arbitration Association|
|1908*||Fredrik Bajer||Denmark||Honorary President, Permanent International Peace Bureau|
|1909*||Auguste Marie François Beernaert||Belgium||Member of the Cour Internationale d'Arbitrage.|
|1909*||Paul-Henri-Benjamin d'Estournelles de Constant||France||founder and president of the French parliamentary group for international arbitration. Founder of the Comité de défense des intérets nationaux et de conciliation internationale|
|1910||International Peace Bureau||Switzerland||Berne|
|1911*||Tobias Michael Carel Asser||Netherlands||initiator of the International Conferences of Private Law in The Hague.|
|1911*||Alfred Hermann Fried||Austria-Hungary||founder of Die Waffen Nieder.|
|1912||Elihu Root||United States||for initiating various arbitration agreements.|
|1913||Henri La Fontaine||Belgium||President of the Permanent International Peace Bureau.|
|1917||International Committee of the Red Cross||Switzerland|
|1919||Woodrow Wilson||United States||President of the United States, as foremost promoter of the League of Nations.|
|1920||Léon Victor Auguste Bourgeois||France||president of the Council of the League of Nations.|
|1921*||Hjalmar Branting||Sweden||prime minister, Swedish delegate to the Council of the League of Nations.|
|1921*||Christian Lous Lange||Norway||secretary-general of the Inter-Parliamentary Union|
|1922||Fridtjof Nansen||Norway||Norwegian delegate to the League of Nations, originator of the Nansen passports for refugees.|
|1925*||Austen Chamberlain||United Kingdom||for the Locarno Treaties.|
|1925*||Charles Gates Dawes||United States||chairman of the Allied Reparations Commission and originator of the Dawes Plan.|
|1926*||Aristide Briand||France||for the Locarno Treaties.|
|1926*||Gustav Stresemann||Germany||for the Locarno Treaties.|
|1927*||Ferdinand Buisson||France||founder and president of the League for Human Rights.|
|1927*||Ludwig Quidde||Germany||delegate to numerous peace conferences.|
|1929||Frank B. Kellogg||United States||for the Kellogg-Briand Pact.|
|1930||Nathan Söderblom||Sweden||leader of the ecumenical movement.|
|1931*||Jane Addams||United States||international president of the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom|
|1931*||Nicholas Murray Butler||United States||for promoting the Kellogg-Briand Pact.|
|1933||Sir Norman Angell||United Kingdom||writer, member of the Executive Committee of the League of Nations and the National Peace Council.|
|1934||Arthur Henderson||United Kingdom||chairman of the League of Nations Disarmament Conference|
|1935||Carl von Ossietzky||Germany||pacifist journalist.|
|1936||Carlos Saavedra Lamas||Argentina||president of the League of Nations and mediator in the Chaco War between Paraguay and Bolivia.|
|1937||Robert Cecil||United Kingdom||founder and president of the International Peace Campaign|
|1938||Nansen International Office For Refugees||Switzerland|
|1944||International Committee of the Red Cross||Switzerland||awarded retroactively in 1945|
|1945||Cordell Hull||United States||for co-initiating the United Nations.|
|1946*||Emily Greene Balch||United States||honorary international president of the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom|
|1946*||John R. Mott||United States||chairman of the International Missionary Council and president of the World Alliance of Young Men's Christian Associations|
|1947||Friends Service Council
American Friends Service Committee
| United Kingdom
|on behalf of the Religious Society of Friends, better known as the Quakers.|
|1948||[no award]||May have been awarded to Mahatma Gandhi had he not been assassinated.|
|1949||Lord Boyd Orr||United Kingdom||director general Food and Agricultural Organization, president National Peace Council, president World Union of Peace Organizations.|
|1950||Ralph Bunche||United States||for mediating in Palestine (1948)|
|1951||Léon Jouhaux||France||president of the International Committee of the European Council, vice president of the International Confederation of Free Trade Unions, vice president of the World Federation of Trade Unions, member of the ILO Council, delegate to the UN.|
|1952||Albert Schweitzer||France||for his philosophy of "Reverence for Life", expressed in many ways, but most famously in founding the Lambaréné Hospital in Gabon|
|1953||George Catlett Marshall||United States||for the Marshall Plan|
|1954||United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees||United Nations|
|1957||Lester Bowles Pearson||Canada||President of the 7th session of the United Nations General Assembly for introducing peacekeeping forces to resolve the Suez Crisis.|
|1958||Georges Pire||Belgium||leader of L'Europe du Coeur au Service du Monde, a relief organization for refugees.|
|1959||Philip Noel-Baker||United Kingdom||"for his lifelong ardent work for international peace and co-operation."|
|1960||Albert Lutuli||South Africa||President, African National Congress|
|1961||Dag Hammarskjöld||Sweden||Secretary-General, United Nations (posthumous)|
|1962||Linus Carl Pauling||United States||"for his campaign against nuclear weapons testing."|
|1963||International Committee of the Red Cross
League of Red Cross societies
|1964||Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.||United States||Leader of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, campaigner for civil rights.|
|1965||United Nations International Children's Emergency Fund (UNICEF)||United Nations|
|1968||René Cassin||France||President, European Court of Human Rights.|
|1969||International Labour Organization||Switzerland|
|1970||Norman Borlaug||United States||"for research at the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center."|
|1971||Willy Brandt||West Germany||"for West Germany's Ostpolitik, embodying a new attitude towards Eastern Europe and East Germany."|
|1973||Henry A. Kissinger
Lê Ðức Thọ (declined the honours)
| United States
|The Vietnam peace accord|
|president of the International Peace Bureau the Commission of Namibia of the United Nations.|
|1975||Andrei Dmitrievich Sakharov||Soviet Union||Campaigns for human rights|
|United Kingdom||Founders of the Northern Ireland Peace Movement (later renamed Community of Peace People).|
|1977||Amnesty International||United Kingdom||Campaign against torture|
|1978||Mohamed Anwar Al-Sadat
|for negotiating peace between Egypt and Israel|
|1979||Mother Teresa|| Albania
|Poverty awareness campaigner|
|1980||Adolfo Pérez Esquivel||Argentina||Human rights advocate|
|1981||United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees||United Nations|
Alfonso García Robles
|Delegates to the United Nations General Assembly on Disarmament|
|1983||Lech Wałęsa||Poland||Founder of Solidarność; campaigner for human rights|
|1984||Desmond Mpilo Tutu||South Africa||Anti-apartheid|
|1985||International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War||United States||"for spreading authoritative information and by creating an awareness of the catastrophic consequences of atomic warfare."|
|1986||Elie Wiesel|| United States
|author, Holocaust survivor|
|1987||Óscar Arias Sánchez||Costa Rica||"for initiating peace negotiations in Central America."|
|1988||United Nations Peace-Keeping Forces||United Nations||For participation in numerous conflicts since 1956. At the time of the award, 736 people from a variety of nations had lost their lives in peacekeeping efforts.|
|1989||Tenzin Gyatso, the 14th Dalai Lama||Template:Country data Tibet
|"for his consistent resistance to the use of violence in his people's struggle to regain their freedom."|
|1990||Mikhail Sergeyevich Gorbachev
(Михаи́л Серге́евич Горбачёв)
|Soviet Union||"for his leading role in the peace process which today characterizes important parts of the international community"|
|1991||Aung San Suu Kyi ()||Myanmar||"for her non-violent struggle for democracy and human rights."|
|1992||Rigoberta Menchú||Template:GUA||"in recognition of her work for social justice and ethno-cultural reconciliation based on respect for the rights of indigenous peoples."|
Frederik Willem de Klerk
|South Africa||"for their work for the peaceful termination of the apartheid regime, and for laying the foundations for a new democratic South Africa."|
|1994||Yasser Arafat (ياسر عرفات)
Shimon Peres (שמעון פרס)
Yitzhak Rabin (יצחק רבין)
| Palestinian Authority
|"for their efforts to create peace in the Middle East."|
Pugwash Conferences on Science and World Affairs
|"for their efforts to diminish the part played by nuclear arms in international politics and, in the longer run, to eliminate such arms."|
|1996||Carlos Filipe Ximenes Belo
|East Timor||"for their work towards a just and peaceful solution to the conflict in East Timor."|
|1997||International Campaign to Ban Landmines
|United States||"for their work for the banning and clearing of anti-personnel mines."|
|United Kingdom||"Awarded for their efforts to find a peaceful solution to the conflict in Northern Ireland."|
|1999||Médecins Sans Frontières||Belgium||"in recognition of the organization's pioneering humanitarian work on several continents."|
|2000||Kim Dae Jung (김대중)||South Korea||"for his work for democracy and human rights in South Korea and in East Asia in general, and for peace and reconciliation with North Korea in particular."|
| United Nations
|"for their work for a better organized and more peaceful world."|
|2002||James Earl (Jimmy) Carter, Jr.||United States||"for his decades of untiring effort to find peaceful solutions to international conflicts, to advance democracy and human rights, and to promote economic and social development."|
|2003||Shirin Ebadi (شيرين عبادي)||Iran||"for her efforts for democracy and human rights. She has focused especially on the struggle for the rights of women and children."|
|2004||Wangari Maathai||Kenya||"for her contribution to sustainable development, democracy and peace."|
|2005||International Atomic Energy Agency
Mohamed ElBaradei (محمد البرادعي)
| United Nations
|"for their efforts to prevent nuclear energy from being used for military purposes and to ensure that nuclear energy for peaceful purposes is used in the safest possible way."|
|2006||Muhammad Yunus (মুহাম্মদ ইউনুস)
|Bangladesh||"for advancing economic and social opportunities for the poor, especially women, through their pioneering microcredit work."|
on Climate Change
Albert Arnold (Al) Gore, Jr.
| United Nations
|"for their efforts to build up and disseminate greater knowledge about man-made climate change, and to lay the foundations for the measures that are needed to counteract such change."|
* Years with multiple motivations for a Nobel Prize.
- ^ Altman, L. (2006). Alfred Nobel and the prize that almost didn't happen. New York Times. Retrieved October 14, 2006.
- ^ BBC History - 1916 Easter Rising - Profiles - The Irish Republican Brotherhood BBC.
- ^ http://www.nobel.no/eng_com_nor.html
- ^ http://www.nobel.no/eng_com_nom.html
- ^ http://nobelprize.org/nomination/peace/database.html
- ^ Richardson, Gunnar, Förtroligt and hemligt : kunglig utrikespolitik och svensk neutralitet under andra världskriget. Stockholm : Carlsson, 2007
- ^ http://nobelprize.org/peace/articles/controversies/index.html
- ^ a b Tønnesson, Øyvind (1999-12-01). "Mahatma Gandhi, the Missing Laureate". The Nobel Foundation. http://nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/peace/articles/gandhi/index.html. Retrieved 2007-10-17.
- ^ http://nobelprize.org/prize_announcements/peace/ask_questions.html
- ^ Presentation Speech by Egil Aarvik, Chairman of the Norwegian Nobel Committee
- ^ http://nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/peace/laureates/1992/tum-bio.html
- ^ Mahatma Gandhi, the Missing Laureate, Nobelprize.org
- "All Nobel Laureates in Peace" – Index webpage on the official site of the Nobel Foundation.
- "The Nobel Peace Prize" – Official webpage of the Norwegian Nobel Institute for the Norwegian Nobel Committee.
- "The Nobel Prize Award Ceremonies" – Official hyperlinked webpage of the Nobel Foundation.
- "The Nobel Prize in Peace" – Official site of the Nobel Foundation.
- "The Nobel Prize Medals and the Medal for the Prize in Economics" – By Birgitta Lemmel; an article on the history of the design of the medals featured on the official site.
- "The Nomination Database for the Nobel Prize in Peace, 1901-1955" – Database featured on the official site of the Nobel Foundation.
- "What the Nobel Laureates Receive" – Featured link in "The Nobel Prize Award Ceremonies".
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