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Israeli Nobel Prize Winners

Winning a Nobel Prize is a great achievement. Since the establishment of the state of Israel seven Nobel Prizes have been awarded to nine Israelis. These amazing people have filled our hearts with pride, joy, and a sense of great accomplishment for the state of Israel. The prizes have been awarded like this: Three prizes in chemistry, two in economics, one in literature, and two in peace.
1966- S.Y. Agnon– The first Israeli to win a Nobel Prize.

Shmuel Yosef Agnon was born in 1888 and raised in a mixed cultural atmosphere. Yiddush was the language spoken in his house. He studied the Torah And Talmud (all in Hebrew) formaly, until age nine. Agnon loved to write. During his lifetime he published dozens of books and stories that gained great fame and admiration. Some of his books include  "Shira,” “Only Yesterday,” “A Simple Story”, and others. Many of his successful books were translated to English. In 1966 S.Y. Agnon won the Nobel Prize in Literature. He wrote in rich Hebrew, mainly about the Jewish world. As the first Nobel Prize winner of Israel, he became the first to fill Israeli hearts with pride and joy.

S.Y. Agnon died on February 17, 1970



 1978- Menachem Begin wins the Nobel Peace Prize

Menachem Begin was born on August 16, 1913. After the establishment of the State of Israel, Begin founded the Herut Movement, and became a candidate for the Knesset. Menachem Begin has been a member of the Knesset since the first elections. During his term as Israel's sixth prime minister he signed a peace agreement with Egyptian President Anwar Sadate. Therefore, winning the peace agreement in 1978.

Menachim Begin died on March 9, 1992


 1994- Yitzhak Rabin and Shimon Peres- another Nobel Peace Prize won
Yitzhak Rabin was born in Jerusalem in 1922.  In 1940 he joined the "Palmach", the elite unit of

the Haganah. During the War of Independence (1948-1949), Rabin commanded the Harel Brigade, deployed on the Jerusalem frontand.

Shimon Peres was born in Poland in 1923 and immigrated with his family to what is now Israel. He studied at the Ben Shemen Agricultural School, and was one of the founders of Kibbutz Alumot in the Jordan Valley. Mr. Peres has served as a Member of the Knesset since 1959 and served as Deputy Minister of Defense from 1959-1965. He is the current president of Israel today.

Former Prime Minister, Yitzhak Rabin,  and currnt president, Shimon Peres, believed strongly in peace. Therefore, they won a Nobel Peace Prize for "their efforts and activities to promote peace in the Middle East".
Yitzhak Rabin was assassinated on November 4, 1995



2002- Prof. Daniel Kahneman proves that “wealth is not happiness” and becomes the first Israeli Nobel Prize winner in Economics

 Daniel Kahneman was born in Tel Aviv in 1934. The family really lived in Paris, but his mother was visiting her extended family in Tel-Aviv, and gave birth.

Professor Daniel Kahneman, a psychologist. won the Nobel Prize n economics in 2002 along with an American, Vernon Smith. The prize was awarded for combining psychology research into economics, pertaining to "the processes of judgment and decision-making under conditions of uncertainty". Kahneman discovered through his research, that wealthy people who can have whatever they want, when they want, are just as happy in life as the average person. So it really does turn out that materials don't buy you happiness!




2004-Technion researchers Avram Hershko and Aaron Ciechanover wins the Nobel Prize in Chemistry
Avram Hershko was born on December 31, 1937, in Karcag, Hungary. Aaron Ciechanover was born in Haifa on October 1947.

In 1956, Avram Hershko started to study at the Hebrew University - Hadassah Medical School in Jerusalem, which was the only medical school in Isael at that time. There, he fell in love with the study of biochemistry. He studied biochemistry in three different courses: organic chemistry, basic biochemistry and a course called "physiological chemistry". In 2004 a pair of Israelis, Avram Hershko and Aaron Ciechanover, from the Technion in Haifa, won the Nobel Prize in Chemistry. Together they discovered the “death tag” for proteins, a molecule that sticks to damaged proteins or those whose time is up, and signals to the cell to destroy them. This is how the human body creates proteins to defend itself against infections.The two men’s work now helps to create new and well improved medicine to treat these types of infection. Their discorvery was incredible, leading them to a Nobel Peace Prize in chemistry.

Be sure to check out this video about the Technion researchers!


2005- Yisrael Aumann’s Game Theory wins

 Another Nobel Prize in Economics
Yisrael Aumann moved from the United States to Israel in the 1950s. He helped found the Center for Rationality at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. In 2005, Yisrael Robert Aumann won the Nobel Prize in Economics for his research in the realm of Game Theory. Through his research, he also found a greater understanding of the term "human rationality", and that thanks to the research, behaviors that were previously considered irrational have now been given a explanation. As Yisrael Auman said himself "If we don't understand why we are here, and that we are not America or just a place in which to live, we will not survive,"




2009- Professor Ada Yonath, the first Israeli woman to win a Nobel Prize
Ada Yonath was born on June 22, 1939 in Jerusalem, Israel. She grew up in a poor family. Although the hard conditions she

lived in didn't affect her. She was always an extremely curious girl. At age five, she was already investigating the world. In one of her expeirements, she tried to measure the hieght of the tiny balcony of the house she lived in, using the furniture from inside her house. She stacked table ontop of table, chair on top of chair, and when it still didn't reach, she tried to climb up herself, fell down, and broke her arm. As she grew up she continued to wonder why things happen, and investigate. By the end of the 1970s, she was a young researcher at the Weizman Institute. Professer Ada Yonath, a researcher in the field of structured biology, was the first woman to win a Nobel Prize in Chemistry since 1964. The research by Yonath, focused on the structure of the ribosome, and the organelle in a cell. Ada Yonath made us proud to call her the first, and currently the only, Israeli woman to win a Nobel Prize.












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