European Union has Done “…the Best Work for Fraternity between Nations”

Just recently in Norwegian capital Oslo the European Union has been awarded the 2012 Nobel Prize for its decades-long historical role in promoting reconciliation and peace. It is interesting that there were 231 nominees shortlisted for the peace prize, 43 of them represented non-governmental and international organizations.

To remind, the tradition of the Nobel Prize belongs to Swedish chemist, architect, innovator and businessman Alfred Nobel who posthumously founded the award. The Peace Prize was among the five awards that Nobel mentioned in his will.

It was mentioned in Nobel’s will that the Peace Prize should be given to “the person who shall have done the most or the best work for fraternity between nations, the abolition or reduction of standing armies and for the holding and promotion of peace congresses.”

Unlike other nominations, the Peace Prize is awarded not only to individuals but organizations as well.

Except the Peace Prize, the remaining five (the sixth of which have been added to the ones Nobel mentioned in his will) are granted in the Royal Academy of Sciences located in Sweden. The name of the Peace Price holder is decided by the Norwegian Nobel Committee, five members of which are appointed by Stortinget – the Norwegian parliament.

This year the concept of peace has been reflected also in Haruki Murakami’s works. This leading figure of the contemporary Japanese literature, also active in civil matters, has lately spoken on the Sino-Japanese territorial dispute. He said that nationalism “is like cheap liquor. Cheap liquor gets you drunk after only a few shots and makes you hysterical.”

However, with an interesting coincidence, Chinese novelist and short story writer Mo Yan became the laureate of Nobel Prize in Literature 2012 for his works depicting “hallucinatory realism merging with folk tales, history and modern environment”.

Now, let us go back to the notion of peace. The contemporary world changes and it changes with a lightning speed. However, notwithstanding the more and more expanding human materialistic needs and emerging wars, it seems having no impact on the striving for peace and an urgent necessity for a peaceful co-existence. The concepts and values’ systems of the spheres distant from politics, such as literature, culture and art in general, come to testify to it.

Be that a silent, noisy, solitary or a group call for peace, one wants to cry out loudly; “Peace, do come! And welcome!”

Let us continue following the forthcoming awards on December 10 in Stockholm and Oslo simultaneously pondering on the vital necessity of peace for our souls, the peace inside and around us.

By Christine Hovsepyan