Society: Arts and Science – August 11


The Nobel Prize is bestowed annually in categories as selected by Swedish and Norwegian committees in recognition of cultural or scientific advances. The 1895 will of Swedish inventor Alfred Nobel established the prizes.
Christiaan Eijkman died on this date in 1930. He was a Dutch physician and professor of physiology whose demonstration that beriberi is caused by poor diet led to the discovery of vitamins. Together with Sir Frederick Hopkins, he received the Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine.
Max Theiler died on this date in 1972. He was a South African-American virologist and doctor. He was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1951 for developing a vaccine against yellow fever in 1937. Born in Pretoria, Theiler was educated in South Africa through completion of his degree in medical school. He went to London for post-graduate work at St Thomas’s Hospital Medical School, King’s College London and at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, earning a 1922 diploma in tropical medicine and hygiene. That year he moved to the United States to do research at the Harvard University School of Tropical Medicine. He lived worked and lived in that nation the rest of his life. In 1930 he moved to the Rockefeller Institute in New York, becoming director of the Virus Laboratory.


Society: Arts and Science – July 16


The Nobel Prize is bestowed annually in categories as selected by Swedish and Norwegian committees in recognition of cultural or scientific advances. The 1895 will of Swedish inventor Alfred Nobel established the prizes.
Frits Zernike was born on this date in 1888. He was a Dutch physicist and winner of the Nobel prize for physics in 1953 for his invention of the phase contrast microscope, an instrument that permits the study of internal cell structure without the need to stain and thus kill the cells.
Julian Seymour Schwinger died on this date in 1994. He was a Nobel Prize winning American theoretical physicist. He is best known for his work on the theory of quantum electrodynamics (QED), in particular for developing a relativistically invariant perturbation theory, and for renormalizing QED to one loop order. Schwinger was a professor in the physics department at UCLA. Schwinger is recognized as one of the greatest physicists of the twentieth century, responsible for much of modern quantum field theory, including a variational approach, and the equations of motion for quantum fields. He developed the first electroweak model, and the first example of confinement in 1+1 dimensions. He is responsible for the theory of multiple neutrinos, Schwinger terms, and the theory of the spin 3/2 field.


Society: Arts and Science – May 25


The Nobel Prize is bestowed annually in categories as selected by Swedish and Norwegian committees in recognition of cultural or scientific advances. The 1895 will of Swedish inventor Alfred Nobel established the prizes.
Pieter Zeeman was born on this day in 1865. He was a Dutch physicist who shared the 1902 Nobel Prize in Physics with Hendrik Lorentz for his discovery of the Zeeman effect.
John Raleigh Mott was born onn this date in 1865. He was a long-serving leader of the Young Men’s Christian Association (YMCA) and the World Student Christian Federation (WSCF). He received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1946 for his work in establishing and strengthening international Protestant Christian student organizations that worked to promote peace. He shared the prize with Emily Balch. From 1895 until 1920 Mott was the General Secretary of the WSCF. Intimately involved in the formation of the World Council of Churches in 1948, that body elected him as a lifelong honorary President. His best-known book, The Evangelization of the World in this Generation, became a missionary slogan in the early twentieth century.


Society: Arts and Science – May 21

Today is International Thanksgiving Day! A day to celebrate your life in a special way…

Swedish and Norwegian committees bestow Nobel Prizes in recognition of cultural or scientific advances. In 1895, the will of Swedish inventor Alfred Nobel established the prizes.
Charles Albert Gobat was born on this day in 1843. He was a Swiss lawyer, educational administrator, and politician who jointly received the Nobel Peace Prize with Élie Ducommun in 1902 for their leadership of the Permanent International Peace Bureau.
Louis Renault was born on this date in 1843. He was a French jurist and educator, the co-winner in 1907 (with Ernesto Teodoro Moneta) of the Nobel Prize for Peace. Renault was born at Autun. From 1868 to 1873 Renault was a professor of Roman and commercial law at the University of Dijon. From 1873 until his death he was a professor in the faculty of law at the University of Paris, where in 1881 he became a professor of international law. In 1890 he was appointed jurisconsult of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, a post created for him in which he scrutinised French foreign policy in the light of international law. He served at numerous conferences in this capacity, notably at the two Hague Conventions (1899 and 1907) and the London Naval Conference of 1908-09. Renault was prominent as an arbitrator, his more famous cases including the Japanese House Tax case of 1905, the Casa Blanca Case of 1909, the Sarvarkar Case of 1911, the Carthage case of 1913, and the Manouba case of 1913. Among his writings are articles and monographs on the specialised topics of international law. Together with his friend and colleague C. Lyon-Caen, he produced several works on commercial law, including a compendium in two volumes, a treatise in eight volumes, and a manual that ran to many editions. In 1879 Renault published his Introduction to the Study of International Law and in 1917, First Violations of International Law by Germany, concerning the invasion of Belgium and of Luxembourg in breach of Germany’s treaty obligations.
Léon Victor Auguste Bourgeois was born on this date in 1851. He was a French statesman. His ideas influenced the Radical Party regarding a wide range of issues. He promoted progressive taxation such as progressive income taxes and social insurance schemes, along with economic equality, expanded educational opportunities, and cooperatives. In foreign policy, he called for a strong League of Nations, and the maintenance of peace through compulsory arbitration, controlled disarmament, economic sanctions, and perhaps an international military force. Following World War I, he became President of the Council of the League of Nations and won the 1920 Nobel Peace Prize for his work.
Willem Einthoven was born on this date in 1860. He was a Dutch doctor and physiologist. He invented the first practical electrocardiogram (ECG or EKG) in 1903 and received the Nobel Prize in Medicine in 1924 for it.
James Franck died on this date in 1964. He was a German physicist and Nobel laureate. He completed his PhD in 1906 and received his venia legendi, or Habilitation, for physics in 1911, both at the University of Berlin, where he lectured and taught until 1918, having reached the position of extraordinarius professor. Franck served as a volunteer in the German Army during World War I. He was seriously injured in 1917 in a gas attack and he was awarded the Iron Cross 1st Class. Franck became the Head of the Physics Division of the Kaiser Wilhelm Gesellschaft for Physical Chemistry. In 1920, Franck became an ordinarius professor of experimental physics and Director of the Second Institute for Experimental Physics at the University of Göttingen. While there he worked on quantum physics with Max Born, who was Director of the Institute of Theoretical Physics. In 1925, Franck received the Nobel Prize in Physics, mostly for his work in 1912–1914, which included the Franck–Hertz experiment, an important confirmation of the Bohr model of the atom. In 1933, after the Nazis came to power, Franck resigned his post in Germany in a letter which he sent to the press for publication. He assisted Frederick Lindermann in helping dismissed Jewish scientists in finding work overseas, before he left Germany in November 1933 to continue his research in the United States, first at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore and then, after a year in Denmark, in Chicago. It was there that he became involved in the Manhattan Project during World War II; he was Director of the Chemistry Division of the Metallurgical Laboratory at the University of Chicago. He was also the chairman of the Committee on Political and Social Problems regarding the atomic bomb; the committee consisted of himself and other scientists at the Met Lab, including Donald J. Hughes, J. J. Nickson, Eugene Rabinowitch, Glenn T. Seaborg, J. C. Stearns and Leó Szilárd. The committee is best known for the compilation of the Franck Report, finished on 11 June 1945, which recommended not to use the atomic bombs on the Japanese cities, based on the problems resulting from such a military application. Following the end of the war, repelled by the use of the atomic bomb he changed his field of research to photosynthesis. When Nazi Germany invaded Denmark in World War II, the Hungarian chemist George de Hevesy dissolved the gold Nobel Prizes of Max von Laue and James Franck in aqua regia to prevent the Nazis from stealing them. He placed the resulting solution on a shelf in his laboratory at the Niels Bohr Institute. After the war, he returned to find the solution undisturbed and precipitated the gold out of the acid. The Nobel Society then recast the Nobel Prizes using the original gold.
Jane Addams died on this date in 1935. She was a pioneer American settlement social worker, public philosopher, sociologist, author, and leader in women’s suffrage and world peace. In an era when presidents such as Theodore Roosevelt and Woodrow Wilson identified themselves as reformers and social activists, Addams was one of the most prominent reformers of the Progressive Era. She helped turn America to issues of concern to mothers, such as the needs of children, local public health, and world peace. She said that if women were to be responsible for cleaning up their communities and making them better places to live, they needed the vote to be effective in doing so. Addams became a role model for middle-class women who volunteered to uplift their communities. She is increasingly being recognised as a member of the American pragmatist school of philosophy. In 1931 she became the first American woman to be awarded the Nobel Peace Prize and is recognised as the founder of the social work profession in the United States.

Society: Arts and Science – April 28


The Nobel Prize is bestowed annually in categories as selected by Swedish and Norwegian committees in recognition of cultural or scientific advances. The 1895 will of Swedish inventor Alfred Nobel established the prizes.
Tobias Michel Karel Asser was born on this date in 1838. He was a Dutch lawyer and legal scholar, cowinner (with Alfred Fried) of the Nobel Prize for Peace in 1911 for his role in the formation of the Permanent Court of Arbitration at the first Hague peace conference (1899).
Harold Clayton Urey was born on this date in 1893. He was an American physical chemist whose pioneering work on isotopes earned him the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1934 for the discovery of deuterium. He played a significant role in the development of the atom bomb, but may be most prominent for his contribution to theories on the development of organic life from non-living matter. Born in Walkerton, Indiana, Urey studied thermodynamics under Gilbert N. Lewis at the University of California. After he received his PhD in 1923, he was awarded a fellowship by the American-Scandinavian Foundation to study at the Niels Bohr Institute in Copenhagen. He was a research associate at Johns Hopkins University before becoming an associate professor of Chemistry at Columbia University. In 1931, he began work with the separation of isotopes that resulted in the discovery of deuterium.During World War II Urey turned his knowledge of isotope separation to the problem of uranium enrichment. He headed the group located at Columbia University that developed isotope separation using gaseous diffusion. The method was successfully developed, becoming the sole method used in the early post-war period. After the war, Urey became professor of chemistry at the Institute for Nuclear Studies, and later Ryerson professor of chemistry at the University of Chicago. Urey speculated that the early terrestrial atmosphere was probably composed of ammonia, methane, and hydrogen. One of his Chicago graduate students was Stanley L. Miller, who showed in the Miller–Urey experiment that, if such a mixture be exposed to electric sparks and water, it can interact to produce amino acids, commonly considered the building blocks of life. Work with isotopes of oxygen led to pioneering the new field of paleoclimatic research. In 1958, he accepted a post as a professor at large at the new University of California, San Diego (UCSD), where he helped create the science faculty. He was one of the founding members of UCSD’s school of chemistry, which was created in 1960. He became increasingly interested in space science, and when Apollo 11 returned moon rock samples from the moon, Urey examined them at the Lunar Receiving Laboratory.
Léon Jouhaux died on this date in 1954. He was a French trade union leader who received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1951. Jouhaux was born in Pantin, Seine-Saint-Denis, France. Jouhaux’s father worked in a match factory in Aubervilliers. His secondary schooling ended when his father’s earnings were stopped by a strike. He gained employment at the factory at age sixteen and immediately became an important part of the union. In 1900, Jouhaux joined a strike against the use of the white phosphorus that blinded his father, was dismissed, and worked at a succession of jobs until union influence saw him reinstated. In 1906, he was elected by the local union as a representative to the General Confederation of Labour (CGT), where his abilities saw him quickly rise through the ranks of organized labour. By 1909 he became interim treasurer, and shortly afterwards became secretary-general of the organization, which he held until 1947. His goals as a trade unionist were the familiar ones of the early labour movement — the eight hour day, the right to union representation and collective bargaining, and paid holidays. During the Popular Front, the 1936 Matignon Agreement, to which he was a signatory, awarded many of these rights to French workers. In the years before World War II, Jouhaux organised several mass protests, and the organization he led protested against the war. However, once the war started, Jouhaux supported his country and believed that a Nazi Germany victory would led to the destruction of democracy in Europe. During the war, he was arrested and imprisoned in Buchenwald concentration camp. After the war, Jouhaux split from the CGT to form the social-democrat Workers’ Force (CGT-FO). In 1951, he was awarded the Nobel Peace prize. In an international context, his work was instrumental in the setting up of the International Labour Organization (ILO), and was elected to high positions in international trade union bodies, including the International Federation of Trade Unions and its postwar kin the World Federation of Trade Unions until that body split. On his passing in 1954, Léon Jouhaux was interred in Le Père Lachaise Cemetery in Paris.


Society: Arts and Science – March 24

Today is International Thanksgiving Day. Find a way to celebrate your life today…
Swedish and Norwegian committees bestow Nobel Prizes in recognition of cultural or scientific advances. In 1895, the will of Swedish inventor Alfred Nobel established the prizes.
Peter Joseph William Debye ForMemRS was born on this date in 1884. He was a Dutch-American physicist and physical chemist, and 1936 Nobel laureate in Chemistry. His first major scientific contribution was the application of the concept of dipole moment to the charge distribution in asymmetric molecules in 1912, developing equations relating dipole moments to temperature and dielectric constant. In consequence, the units of molecular dipole moments are termed debyes in his honour. Also in 1912, he extended Albert Einstein’s theory of specific heat to lower temperatures by including contributions from low-frequency phonons. See Debye model. In 1913, he extended Niels Bohr’s theory of atomic structure, introducing elliptical orbits, a concept also introduced by Arnold Sommerfeld. During 1914–1915, Debye calculated the effect of temperature on X-ray diffraction patterns of crystalline solids with Paul Scherrer (the “Debye–Waller factor”). In 1923, together with his assistant Erich Hückel, he developed an improvement of Svante Arrhenius’ theory of electrical conductivity in electrolyte solutions. Although an improvement was made to the Debye–Hückel equation in 1926 by Lars Onsager, the theory is still regarded as a major forward step in our understanding of electrolytic solutions. Also in 1923, Debye developed a theory to explain the Compton effect, the shifting of the frequency of X-rays when they interact with electrons.
Adolf Friedrich Johann Butenandt was born on this date in 1903. He was a German biochemist. He was awarded the 1939 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for his “work on sex hormones.” He initially rejected the award in accordance with government policy but accepted it in 1949 after World War II.
Sir John Cowdery Kendrew, CBE, FRS was born on this date in 1917. He was an English biochemist and crystallographer who shared the 1962 Nobel Prize in Chemistry with Max Perutz; their group in the Cavendish Laboratory investigated the structure of heme-containing proteins.




Society: Arts and Science – March 10

Today is International Thanksgiving Day. Find a way to celebrate your life today…
Swedish and Norwegian committees bestow Nobel Prizes in recognition of cultural or scientific advances. In 1895, the will of Swedish inventor Alfred Nobel established the prizes.
Sir William Henry Bragg OM, KBE, PRS died on this day in 1942. He was a British physicist, chemist, mathematician and active sportsman who uniquely shared a Nobel Prize with his son William Lawrence Bragg – the 1915 Nobel Prize in Physics: “for their services in the analysis of crystal structure by means of X-rays”. The mineral Braggite is named after him and his son. He was knighted in 1920.
Frits Zernike died on this date in 1966. He was a Dutch physicist and winner of the Nobel prize for physics in 1953 for his invention of the phase contrast microscope, an instrument that permits the study of internal cell structure without the need to stain and thus kill the cells.