What is the Nobel Prize?
The mere mention of the Nobel Prize conjures images of inspired scientists, exemplars of peace, and meditative writers. Though the prizes are well respected, a rich tangle of lore has grown around them during the 116 years they have been awarded, driven in part by the secrecy inherent in the selection process.
Intended to recognize scientists, artists, and diplomats who work to improve life for all humanity, the prizes were established in 1895 at the bequest of Swedish inventor and businessman Alfred Nobel. Though Nobel carried his rationale for each prize category into the grave, in life, he had a keen interest in physics, chemistry, medicine, and literature—four of the five original prize disciplines.
The fifth, for peace,