Lots has been written about the Nobel Peace Prize, but like any widely discussed and hotly debated subject, there's wheat and there's chaff. Of the sources we've seen, here are a few standouts.
— Irwin Abrams & Scott London

The Nobel Peace Prize: Recommended Sources


The Nobel Peace Prize: One Hundred Years for Peace: Laureates 1901-2000.
By Øivind Stenersen, Ivar Libaek and Asle Sveen.
Oslo: Cappelen, 2001.

This book, published in conjunction with the centenary of the Nobel Peace Prize in 2001, begins with a look at the life of Alfred Nobel, an overview of the Norwegian Nobel Committee, and the history of the Nobel Institute. It goes on to present richly illustrated biographies, in chronological order, of all the prizewinners from 1901 to 2000. A final essay surveys the views of the different laureates on how peace might best be achieved. Though written by three scholars at the University of Oslo, the book is written for a broad general audience.

The Nobel Peace Prize and the Laureates: An Illustrated Biographical History, 1901-2001.
By Irwin Abrams.
Canton, Mass.: Science History Publications, 2001.

Hailed by the American Library Association as an "outstanding reference work," this authoritative survey of the Nobel Peace Prize details the evolution of the prize, delves into the role and mechanics of the Norwegian Nobel Committee, and profiles a century of laureates. Originally published in 1988 and revised and expanded in 2001, the book was described by Choice magazine as "a wonderful reference work" — "The introductory material and all the biographic entries are concise, well-written, meet high academic standards, and are enjoyable as well."

Nobel Lectures in Peace
Edited by Frederick W. Haberman, Irwin Abrams and Scott London.
Singapore: World Scientific, 1997-2009.

The authorized edition of the Nobel lectures in peace, published in eight volumes, presents a detailed introduction to each prize, the official announcement of the award by the Norwegian Nobel Committee, the presentations speeches by the chair of the committee (or other representative), biographies of the laureates, and extensive notes and bibliographies. The first three volumes, covering the years 1901-1970, were edited by Frederick Haberman. Volumes 4-7, covering 1971-2000, were edited by Irwin Abrams. Volume 8 (2001-2005) was edited by Irwin Abrams and Scott London.

The First Century of Nobel Peace Prizes
Edited by Charles Chatfield
Peace and Change: A Journal of Peace Research. Vol. 26, No. 4. October 2001.

This special issue of Peace and Change, the respected journal of peace research, looks back on the first century of the Nobel Peace Prize with academic essays by such noted scholars as Charles Chatfield, Øyvind Tønnesson, Peter Van Den Dungen, Irwin Abrams, Olav Njølstad, and Ivar Libæk, Asle Sveen and Øivind Stenersen. Among the questions taken up are what makes the Nobel Peace Prize unique, the decision-making process of the Nobel committee prior to the World War II, and the trends that have shaped the prize's evolution over the years.

Other Excellent Sources:


Le prix Nobel de la paix et l'Institut Nobel norvégien
Rapport historique et descriptif accompagné d'une histoire du mouvement pacifiste.
By Ragnvald Moe. Aschenhoug. 1932.

Norway and the Nobel Peace Prize
By Oscar J. Falnes
Columbia University Press, 1938. (Reprinted by AMS Press, 1967)

The Nobel Peace Prize and the Laureates
The Meaning and Acceptance of the Nobel Peace Prize in the Prize Winners' Countries
Edited by Karl Holl and Anne C. Kjelling
P. Lang, 1994.

Der Friedens-Nobelpreis: von 1901 bis heute
By Michael Neumann
Pacis, 1986-93.

Peace! By the Nobel Peace Prize Laureates: An Anthology
Edited by Marek Thee
UNESCO, 1995.

The Words of Peace: The Nobel Peace Prize Laureates of the Twentieth Century
Selections from Their Acceptance Speeches
Edited by Irwin Abrams (with a foreword by Jimmy Carter)
Newmarket Press, 2008.

Alfred Nobel: A Biography
By Kenne Fant
Arcade, 1993.

The Moral Architecture of World Peace
Nobel Laureates Discuss Our Global Future
By Helena Cobban
University Press of Virginia, 2000.

Peacemakers: Winners of the Nobel Peace Prize
By Ann T. Keene
Oxford University Press, 1998.

Patriotic Pacifism: Waging War on War in Europe, 1815-1914
By Sandi E. Cooper
Oxford University Press, 1991.