Nobel Prizes

The Local’s alternative guide to the Nobel Prizes

The Local's alternative guide to the Nobel Prizes
Most Confusing Win? Meet Patrick Modiano, Laureate for Literature. Photo: TT
Now that the Nobel dust has settled, The Local's Oliver Gee hands out his own prizes for the best and worst moments of the week - from Best Laureate Name to the Most Helpful Simile.
Yes, the 2014 Nobel Prizes are over. We were there for the whole ride and blogged live from the announcements in Stockholm and Oslo. 
And what better way to summarize it all than with some prizes of our own. We present: The Local's Prizes for the Nobel Prizes. 
Most Audience-Friendly Win: The Nobel Prizes got a little bit cool when 17-year-old Malala Yousafzay became the youngest ever Peace Laureate. It's a safe bet that young Malala was the first winner this year that many news readers (and news writers) had heard of before. She was shot by the Taliban on her way to school in Pakistan and has since become one of the world's most vocal campaigners for gender equality and education. We also award the brave teenager The Prize for Making Everybody Else Feel Like They've Not Achieved Anything With Their Lives. 

Malala Yousafzay is just 17 years old. Photo: TT
Excellence in Geography: We tip our hats to the Nobel Committee for selecting a set of winners from a very broad range of countries. In 2014 these included Norway, the US, Japan, France, Pakistan, India, the UK. Plus a Romanian-born German.

Worst Example of Gender Equality: We weren't impressed by the not-very-noble fact that there were only two female winners out of a total 13 laureates. But considering there have been hardly any women Laureates at all in the past, we're moving in the right direction. 

Most Helpful Simile: The Nobel Committee in Chemistry did a good job in helping us all understand the laureates' work with microscope and molecules. They compared it to looking at a city of buildings but not being able to see the people inside them. The laureates' work allowed us to see these "people" inside. Still don't get it? Read more.
Best Laureate Name: Professor Hell, who took home the prize in Physics
Most Confusing Win: Patrick Modiano for Literature. Let's be honest, you've never heard of him. Neither had the world (outside of France, anyway). Before the announcement, his most famous book "Missing Person" was ranked 76,199th on the Amazon best-seller list. By the end of the day it was ranked third. Check out our top five facts about Modiano.
Patrick Modiano made headlines across the world with his win. Photo: TT
Worst Press Conference: The Physics Prize. Despite a room full of scientists, and despite the fact that Skype was invented in Sweden, the phone call to Japanese Laureate Shuji Nakamura was of such poor quality that the journalists put down their pens and started giggling.
The only word I could understand from the professor was "unbelievable". It will remain a mystery if he was referring to the honour of winning or the quality of the live connection. 

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