French Nobel laureates

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  1. Jean-Paul Sartre

    Jean-Paul Sartre


    Jean-Paul Charles Aymard Sartre (/ˈsɑrtrə/; 21 June 1905 – 15 April 1980) was a French philosopher, playwright, novelist, political activist, biographer, and literary critic. He was one of the key figures in the philosophy of existentialism and phenomenology, and one of the leading figures in 20th-century French philosophy and Marxism.

  2. Albert Camus

    Albert Camus


    Albert Camus (7 November 1913 – 4 January 1960) was a French Nobel Prize–winning author, journalist, and philosopher. His views contributed to the rise of the philosophy known as absurdism. He wrote in his essay The Rebel that his whole life was devoted to opposing the philosophy of nihilism while still delving deeply into individual freedom.

  3. Marie Curie

    Marie Curie


    Marie Skłodowska-Curie (ˈkjʊri, kjʊˈri; 7 November 1867 – 4 July 1934) was a Polish and naturalized-French physicist and chemist who conducted pioneering research on radioactivity. She was the first woman to win a Nobel Prize, the first person and only woman to win twice, the only person to win twice in multiple sciences, and was part of the Curie family legacy of five Nobel Prizes. She was also the first woman to become a professor at the University of Paris, and in 1995 became the first woman to be entombed on her own merits in the Panthéon in Paris.

  4. Albert Schweitzer

    Albert Schweitzer


    Albert Schweitzer (14 January 1875 – 4 September 1965) was a German—and later French—theologian, organist, philosopher, physician, and medical missionary in Africa, also known for his historical work on Jesus. He was born in the province of Alsace-Lorraine, at that time part of the German Empire, though he considered himself French and wrote mostly in French.

  5. Anatole France

    Anatole France


    Anatole France (born François-Anatole Thibault, 16 April 1844 – 12 October 1924) was a French poet, journalist, and novelist. He was born in Paris, and died in Saint-Cyr-sur-Loire. He was a successful novelist, with several best-sellers. Ironic and skeptical, he was considered in his day the ideal French man of letters. He was a member of the Académie française, and won the 1921 Nobel Prize for Literature "in recognition of his brilliant literary achievements, characterized as they are by a nobility of style, a profound human sympathy, grace, and a true Gallic temperament".

  6. Henri Bergson

    Henri Bergson


    Henri-Louis Bergson (18 October 1859 – 4 January 1941) was a major French philosopher, influential especially in the first half of the 20th century. Bergson convinced many thinkers that the processes of immediate experience and intuition are more significant than abstract rationalism and science for understanding reality. Bergson had a long affair with musicologist Janet Levy which led to her article "A Source of Musical Wit and Humor." This was a well-regarded article used by many later writers.

  7. Frédéric Passy

    Frédéric Passy


    Frédéric Passy (May 20, 1822 – June 12, 1912) was a French economist and a joint winner (together with Henry Dunant) of the first Nobel Peace Prize awarded in 1901.

  8. Aristide Briand

    Aristide Briand


    Aristide Briand (28 March 1862 – 7 March 1932) was a French statesman who served eleven terms as Prime Minister of France during the French Third Republic and was a co-laureate of the 1926 Nobel Peace Prize.

  9. Frédéric Mistral

    Frédéric Mistral


    Frédéric Mistral (Occitan: Frederic Mistral, 8 September 1830 – 25 March 1914) was a French writer and lexicographer of the Occitan language. Mistral received the 1904 Nobel Prize in Literature "in recognition of the fresh originality and true inspiration of his poetic production, which faithfully reflects the natural scenery and native spirit of his people, and, in addition, his significant work as a Provençal philologist". He was a founding member of Félibrige and a member of l'Académie de Marseille.

  10. Albert Fert

    Albert Fert


    Albert Fert (born 7 March 1938) is a French physicist and one of the discoverers of giant magnetoresistance which brought about a breakthrough in gigabyte hard disks. Currently, he is an emeritus professor at Université Paris-Sud in Orsay and scientific director of a joint laboratory ('Unité mixte de recherche') between the Centre national de la recherche scientifique (National Scientific Research Centre) and Thales Group. Also, he is an Adjunct professor of physics at Michigan State University. He was awarded the 2007 Nobel Prize in Physics together with Peter Grünberg.

  11. Alexis Carrel

    Alexis Carrel


    Alexis Carrel (28 June 1873 – 5 November 1944) was a French surgeon and biologist who was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1912 for pioneering vascular suturing techniques. He invented the first perfusion pump with Charles A. Lindbergh opening the way to organ transplantation. Like many intellectuals before World War II he promoted eugenics. He was a regent for the French Foundation for the Study of Human Problems during Vichy France which implemented the eugenics policies there; his association with the Foundation and with Jacques Doriot's ultra-nationalist PPF led to investigations of collaborating with the Nazis, but he passed away before any trial could be held. He faced media attacks towards the end of his life over his alleged involvement with the Nazis.

  12. Pierre Curie

    Pierre Curie


    Pierre Curie (ˈkjʊri, kjʊˈri; 15 May 1859 – 19 April 1906) was a French physicist, a pioneer in crystallography, magnetism, piezoelectricity and radioactivity. In 1903 he received the Nobel Prize in Physics with his wife, Marie Skłodowska-Curie, and Henri Becquerel, "in recognition of the extraordinary services they have rendered by their joint researches on the radiation phenomena discovered by Professor Henri Becquerel".

  13. André Gide

    André Gide


    André Paul Guillaume Gide (22 November 1869 – 19 February 1951) was a French author and winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1947 "for his comprehensive and artistically significant writings, in which human problems and conditions have been presented with a fearless love of truth and keen psychological insight". Gide's career ranged from its beginnings in the symbolist movement, to the advent of anticolonialism between the two World Wars.

  14. Claude Simon

    Claude Simon


    Claude Simon (10 October 1913 – 6 July 2005) was a Malagasy-French author and academic, and the 1985 Nobel Laureate in Literature.

  15. Pierre-Gilles de Gennes

    Pierre-Gilles de Gennes


    Pierre-Gilles de Gennes (October 24, 1932 – May 18, 2007) was a French physicist and the Nobel Prize laureate in physics in 1991.

  16. Sully Prudhomme

    Sully Prudhomme


    René François Armand (Sully) Prudhomme (16 March 1839 – 6 September 1907) was a French poet and essayist, and was the first ever winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature, in 1901.

  17. Frédéric Joliot-Curie

    Frédéric Joliot-Curie


    Jean Frédéric Joliot-Curie (19 March 1900 – 14 August 1958), born Jean Frédéric Joliot, was a French physicist, husband of Irène Joliot-Curie and Nobel laureate.

  18. Roger Martin du Gard

    Roger Martin du Gard


    Roger Martin du Gard (23 March 1881 – 22 August 1958) was a French author and novelist, winner of the 1937 Nobel Prize for Literature.

  19. Irène Joliot-Curie

    Irène Joliot-Curie


    Irène Joliot-Curie (12 September 1897 – 17 March 1956) was a French scientist, the daughter of Marie Skłodowska-Curie and Pierre Curie and the wife of Frédéric Joliot-Curie. Jointly with her husband, Joliot-Curie was awarded the Nobel Prize for Chemistry in 1935 for their discovery of artificial radioactivity. This made the Curies the family with the most Nobel laureates to date. Both children of the Joliot-Curies, Hélène and Pierre, are also esteemed scientists.

  20. Henri Becquerel

    Henri Becquerel


    Antoine Henri Becquerel (15 December 1852 – 25 August 1908) was a physicist, Nobel laureate, and the discoverer of radioactivity, for work in this field he, along with Marie Skłodowska-Curie and Pierre Curie, received the 1903 Nobel Prize in Physics. The SI unit for radioactivity, the becquerel (Bq), is named after him.

  21. J. M. G. Le Clézio

    J. M. G. Le Clézio


    Jean-Marie Gustave Le Clézio (born 13 April 1940), usually identified as J. M. G. Le Clézio, is a French-Mauritian writer and professor. The author of over forty works, he was awarded the 1963 Prix Renaudot for his novel Le Procès-Verbal, as well as the 2008 Nobel Prize in Literature for his life's work, as an "author of new departures, poetic adventure and sensual ecstasy, explorer of a humanity beyond and below the reigning civilization".

  22. François Mauriac

    François Mauriac


    François Charles Mauriac (11 October 1885 – 1 September 1970) was a French author, member of the Académie française (from 1933), and laureate of the Nobel Prize in Literature (1952). He was awarded the Grand Cross of the Légion d'honneur in 1958.

  23. Françoise Barré-Sinoussi

    Françoise Barré-Sinoussi


    Françoise Barré-Sinoussi (born 30 July 1947) is a French virologist and director of the Regulation of Retroviral Infections Division (Unité de Régulation des Infections Rétrovirales) at the Institut Pasteur in Paris, France. Born in Paris, France, Barré-Sinoussi performed some of the fundamental work in the identification of the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) as the cause of AIDS. In 2008, she was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine, together with her former mentor, Luc Montagnier, for their discovery of HIV. She mandatorily retired from active research on August 31, 2015 and will fully retire by some time in 2017.

  24. Louis de Broglie

    Louis de Broglie


    Louis-Victor-Pierre-Raymond, 7th duc de Broglie (/dəˈbrɔɪ/; or 15 August 1892 – 19 March 1987) was a French physicist who made groundbreaking contributions to quantum theory. In his 1924 PhD thesis he postulated the wave nature of electrons and suggested that all matter has wave properties. This concept is known as the de Broglie hypothesis, an example of wave-particle duality, and forms a central part of the theory of quantum mechanics.

  25. Georges Charpak

    Georges Charpak


    Georges Charpak (born Jerzy Charpak, 1 August 1924 – 29 September 2010) was a Polish born, French physicist from a Polish Jewish family who was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1992.

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