Other Events, deaths, births, of 03 Nov
On a 03 November:
1954 The Nobel Chemistry Prize announced for Pauling “for his research into the nature of the chemical bond and its application to the elucidation of the structure of complex substances.”

When, in the early nineteenth century, Dalton had produced experimental proofs that matter consists of atoms it was not long before an explanation was sought of the forces that bind the atoms together. Berzelius was of the opinion that this chemical bond was caused by electrostatic attraction between the atoms; according to this belief, a bond was established between two atoms if one of the atoms was positively, and the other negatively charged. In 1819 when Berzelius presented his theory he could apply it almost exclusively to inorganic substances; only few organic substances were known as pure compounds, and the study of these was difficult due to their complicated and often insufficiently known composition. Berzelius, however, contrived to explain, with the help of the new theory, the bond conditions for a great number of inorganic substances, and could in this wav contribute in a high degree to a greater clarity in this field.
      Even in inorganic chemistry, however, certain difficulties arose. How should one explain, for instance, how two hydrogen atoms unite to become a hydrogen molecule? In order to obtain attraction between atoms, one of the atoms must be positive and the other negative; but why should two atoms of the same kind possess charges with opposite sign? And when the knowledge of organic compounds increased, new difficulties arose. Berzelius, for example, found it necessary to assume that the hydrogen atom was always positive and the chlorine atom always negative. Now it was also found that in organic molecules a hydrogen atom could often be exchanged for a chlorine atom, which should be impossible if one was positive and the other negative.
      With increased knowledge, problems that could not be explained by Berzelius' theory became more and more numerous, and the theory became discredited.
      After the atomic theory had been accepted, it soon became apparent that another important object in the field of chemistry must be to determine not only the nature of the chemical bond but also how the atoms are arranged geometrically when they unite to form larger groups, such as molecules. Permit me to quote from a book, remarkable in its day, Die Chemie der Jetztzeit written in 1869 by the Swedish chemist Blomstrand:
      "It is the important task of the chemist to imitate faithfully in his own way the elaborate constructions which we call chemical compounds, and in the erection of which the atoms have served as building stones, to determine as to number and relative position the points of attack at which one or the other of the atoms attaches itself to the other, in short, to determine the distribution in space of the atoms."
      Blomstrand makes it the aim, therefore, to find the geometrical construction of substances, or what is nowadays called their structure.
      At the end of the 19th century it became obvious that one had to consider several different kinds of chemical bond. Thus, the difficulties of the Berzelius theory were also explained. Berzelius' interpretation was in principle correct as regards a very important type of bond, but he had made the mistake of applying it also to bonds of a different type. After Bohr had introduced his atomic theory one could moreover with its help give a fairly satisfactory explanation of the Berzelius bond. As this bond occurs between electrically charged atoms, so-called ions, this bond type has often been called the ionic bond. The most typical ionic bonds unite the atoms in the crystals of simple salts.
      The bond which above all others had prevented a general application of the Berzelius theory is now commonly known as the covalent bond. It occurs commonly when atoms unite to form a molecule and was once characterized by the famous American chemist Gilbert Newton Lewis as "the chemical bond". The bond between the two hydrogen atoms in a hydrogen molecule, which, as was said before, could not be explained by Berzelius' theory, is covalent.
      For a long time it was difficult to explain the nature of the covalent bond. Lewis, however, succeeded in 1916 in showing that it is brought about by electrons - generally two - which are shared in common by two neighbouring atoms, thereby uniting them. Eleven years later Heitler and London were able to give a quantum-mechanical explanation of the phenomenon. An exact mathematical treatment of the covalent bond, however, was possible only in the simple case where only one electron unites the two atoms, and when these do not contain additional electrons outside the atomic nuclei. Even for the hydrogen molecule, which contains two electrons, the treatment cannot be absolutely exact, and in still more complicated cases the mathematical difficulties increase rapidly. It has, therefore, been necessary to use approximate methods, and the results depend to a large extent on the choice of suitable methods and the manner of their application.
      Linus Pauling has actively contributed towards the development of these methods, and he has applied them with extreme skill. The results have been such as to be easily usable by chemists. Pauling has also eagerly sought to apply his views to a number of structures which have been experimentally determined during the last decades, both in his own laboratory in Pasadena and elsewhere. It is hardly necessary to mention that we have nowadays great possibilities of reaching Blomstrand's objective of determining the distribution of atoms in space. This is principally done by methods of X-ray crystallography involving an examination of how a crystal influences X-rays in certain respects, and then out of the effect seeking to determine how the atoms are placed in the crystal. Pauling's methods have been very successful and have led to observations which have further advanced the theoretical treatment.
      But if the structure of a substance is too complicated it may become impossible to make a more direct determination of the structure with X-rays. In such cases it may be possible, from a knowledge of bond types, atomic distances and bond directions, to predict the structure and then examine whether the prediction is supported by the experiments. Pauling has tried this method in his studies of the structure of proteins with which he has been occupied during recent years. To make a direct determination of the structure of a protein by X-ray methods is out of the question for the present, owing to the enormous number of atoms in the molecule. A molecule of the coloured blood constituent hemoglobin, which is a protein, contains for example more than 8000 atoms.
      In the late nineteen thirties Pauling and his colleagues had already begun to determine with X-rays the structure of amino acids and dipeptides, that is to say, compounds of relatively simple structure containing what may be called fragments of proteins. From this were obtained valuable information - about atomic distances and bond directions. These values were supplemented by the determination of the probable limits of variation for distances and directions.
      On this basis Pauling deduced some possible structures of the fundamental units in proteins, and the problem was then to examine whether these could explain the X-ray data obtained. It has thus become apparent that one of these structures, the so-called alpha-helix, probably exists in several proteins.
      How far Pauling is right in detail still remains to be proved, but he has surely found an important principle in the structure of proteins. His method is sure to prove most productive in continued studies.
      It is hardly necessary to question the practical use of the knowledge of the nature of chemical bonds and of the structure of substances. It is obvious that the properties of a substance must largely depend on the strength with which its atoms are united and the nature of the resulting structure. This I does not only apply to the physical properties of the substance, for instance hardness and melting point, but also to its chemical properties, that is to say how it participates in chemical reactions. If we know how certain atoms or groups of atoms are placed in a molecule we can often predict how the molecule should react under given conditions. And as every reaction results in the breaking of some bonds and the formation of others the result will largely depend on the relative strength of the different bonds.
     Since Professor Pauling began his scientific career more than thirty years before receiving the Nobel Prize, he has covered a diversity of subjects ranging over wide fields of chemistry, physics, and even medicine. It has been said of him that he has chosen to live "on the frontiers of science" and chemists are keenly aware of the influence and the stimulative effect of his pioneer work. Wide though his field of activity may be, he has devoted the greater part of his energy to the study of the nature of the chemical bond and the determination of the structure of molecules and crystals.
     Linus Carl Pauling was born in Portland, Oregon, on 28 February 1901, the son of a druggist, Herman Henry William Pauling, who, though born in Missouri, was of German descent, and his wife, Lucy Isabelle Darling, born in Oregon of English-Scottish ancestry. Linus attended the public elementary and high schools in the town of Condon and the city of Portland, Oregon, and entered the Oregon State College in 1917, receiving the degree of B.Sc. in chemical engineering in 1922. During the years 1919-1920 he served as a full-time teacher of quantitative analysis in the State College, after which he was appointed a Teaching Fellow in Chemistry in the California Institute of Technology and was a graduate student there from 1922 to 1925, working under Professor Roscoe G. Dickinson and Richard C. Tolman. In 1925 he was awarded the Ph.D. (summa cum laude) in chemistry, with minors in physics and mathematics.
      Since 1919 his interest lay in the field of molecular structure and the nature o the chemical bond, inspired by papers by Irving Langmuir on the application of the Lewis theory of the sharing of pairs of electrons between atoms to many substances. In 1921 he suggested, and attempted to carry out, an experiment on the orientation of iron atoms by a magnetic field, through the electrolytic deposition of a layer of iron in a strong magnetic field and the determination of the orientation of the iron crystallises by polishing and etching the deposit, and microscopic examination of the etch figures. With Professor Dickinson, he began in 1922 the experimental determination of the structures of some crystals, and also started theoretical work on the nature of the chemical bond. Since his appointment to the Staff of California Institute of Technology,
      Professor Pauling has written several books, ranging from his most famous one The Nature of the Chemical Bond, and the Structure of Molecules and Crystals (1939, 1949, 1960) via General Chemistry (1947, 1953), which was translated into nine languages, to No More War! (1958, 1959,1962).
      The subjects of the papers Pauling published reflect his great scientific versatility: about 350 publications in the fields of experimental determination of the structure of crystals by the diffraction of X-rays and the interpretation of these structures in terms of the radii and other properties of atoms; the application of quantum mechanics to physical and chemical problems, including dielectric constants, X-ray doublets, momentum distribution of electrons in atoms, rotational motion of molecules in crystals, Van der Waals forces, etc.; the structure of metals and intermetallic compounds, the theory of ferromagnetism; the nature of the chemical bond, including the resonancc phenomenon in chemistry; the experimental determination of the structure of gas molecules by the diffraction of electrons; the structure of proteins; the structure of antibodies and the nature of serological reactions; the structure and properties of hemoglobin and related substances; abnormal hemoglobin molecules in relation to the hereditary hemolytic anemias; the molecular theory of general anesthesia; an instrument for determining the partial pressure of oxygen in a gas; and other subjects.
      Pauling married Ava Helen Miller of Beaver Creek, Oregon, in 1923. She is of English-Scottish and German descent. They have four children, Linus (Carl) Jr. (1925), Peter Jeffress (1931), Linda Helen (1932) and Edward Crellin (1937), and (at the time of the award) thirteen grandchildren.
     In the McCarthy era, Pauling's anti-nuclear stance earned him the reputation of a "red". In 1952, when the Royal Society organized a Discussion on the Structure of Proteins at which Pauling should have been the principal contributor, he could not come because the State Department had withdrawn his passport. In 1954, the English philosopher Bertrand Russell gave Christmas lectures on the radio warning of the dangers of nuclear war. Next year he drew up a manifesto against nuclear arms which Albert Einstein signed a few days before his death. This concluded with the words: "There lies before us, if we choose, continual progress in happiness, knowledge and wisdom. Shall we, instead, choose death, because we cannot forget our quarrels? We appeal, as human beings, to human beings: remember your humanity and forget the rest. If you can do so, the way lies open to a new paradise; if you cannot, there lies before you the risk of universal death". Pauling signed this manifesto together with seven prominent physicists and the geneticist Hermann Muller; it led to the convening of the first Pugwash Conference at which Soviet and Western scientists discussed measures to reduce the dangers of nuclear war. In 1958, Pauling published a book: No More War and handed to Dag Hammarskj÷ld, the Secretary General of the United Nations, a petition signed by 9235 scientists "urging that an international agreement to stop the testing of nuclear weapons be made now . . . . inasmuch as it is the scientists who have some measure of the complex factors involved in the problem, such as the magnitude of the genetic and somatic effects of the released radioactive materials". In May 1961 Pauling organised a conference of forty scientists on nuclear disarmament in Oslo, and afterwards led hundreds of people in a torchlight procession against nuclear war through the streets of Oslo. His campaign, conducted with the same panache as his lectures on chemistry, made a vital contribution to the conclusion of the atmospheric test ban in 1963 and won him the Nobel Prize for Peace r of that year. He also campaigned against the war in Vietnam, undeterred by being called a traitor.
      In 1966 Pauling conceived the idea that huge doses of vitamin C were vital for health, and that they cured the common cold and even cancer. Chemists shops in Britain still sell vitamin C as "Linus Powder", of which he swallowed about eighteen grammes every day; probably about 100 milligrams would have been absorbed and the rest excreted. Ascorbic acid is a scavenger of free radicals and a deficiency of it may therefore increase the likelihood of cancer, but there is no solid evidence that such massive doses have any prophylactic effect. It seems tragic that this should have become one of Pauling's major preoccupations for the last 25 years of his life and spoilt his great reputation as a chemist. Perhaps it was related to his greatest failing, his vanity. When anybody contradicted Einstein, he thought it over, and if he found he was wrong, he was delighted, because he felt he had escaped from an error, and that he now knew better than before, but Pauling would never admit that he might have been wrong. When, after reading Pauling's and Corey's paper on the alpha-helix, M. F. Perutz discovered an X-ray reflection at 1.5┼ spacing from planes perpendicular to the axis of protein fibres which excluded all conformations other than the alpha-helix, Pauling attacked him furiously, because he could not bear the idea that someone else had thought of a test for the alpha-helix of which he had not thought himself. However they later became good friends.
      Linus Carl Pauling died on 19 August 1994. We will never know whether, without the vitamin C, he might have lived to see his hundredth birthday on 28 February 2001 ...

Linus Pauling also received the 1962 Nobel Peace Prize
     The Nobel Committee of the Norwegian Parliament selected him because since 1946 he had campaigned ceaselessly, not only against nuclear weapons tests, not only against the spread of these armaments, not only against their very use, but against all warfare as a means of solving international conflicts.
     Pauling thus became the only person to win two undivided Nobel Prizes.
(Marie S. Curie won the Prize in Chemistry for 1911 and shared the Prize in Physics for 1903).
On 03 November 1916: the Nobel 1936 Literature laureate has a play at the opening of Playwrights' Theater.
     It is the experimental theater's first New York season, in Greenwich Village. The premiere featured three short plays: The Game, by journalist and social activist Louise Bryant; King Arthur's Socks, a comedy by Floyd Dell; and Bound East for Cardiff, a one-act play by then unknown playwright Eugene Gladstone O'Neill, who would become one the most influential American artists of the twentieth century. O'Neill, who wrote more than twenty full-length plays over the course of the next two decades, is credited with transforming US theater into a literary medium which, in its artistry, rivaled the best in US fiction and painting. He won four Pulitzer Prizes for his plays and remains the only American playwright to have received the Nobel Prize in Literature.
  • O'NEILL ONLINE: Beyond the Horizon, The Hairy Ape
  • LOUISE BRYANT ONLINE: Six Red Months in Russia: An Observer's Account of Russia Before and During the Proletarian Dictatorship

    The Swedish Academy awarded the 1936 Nobel Prize in Literature to O'Neill “for the power, honesty and deep-felt emotions of his dramatic works, which embody an original concept of tragedy”
    AutobiographyAcceptance Speech
  •      Eugene O'Neill was born on 16 October 1888. He was a foremost UN dramatist. He died on 27 November 1953.
    O'Neill's dramatic production has been of a sombre character from the very first, and for him life as a whole quite early came to signify tragedy.
         This has been attributed to the bitter experiences of his youth, more especially to what he underwent as a sailor. The legendary nimbus that gathers around celebrities in his case took the form of heroic events created out of his background. With his contempt for publicity, O'Neill straightway put a stop to all such attempts; there was no glamour to be derived from his drab hardships and toils. We may indeed conclude that the stern experiences were not uncongenial to his spirit, tending as they did to afford release of certain chaotic forces within him.
         O'Neill's pessimism was presumably on the one hand an innate trait of his being, on the other an offshoot of the literary current of the age, though possibly it is rather to be interpreted as the reaction of a profound personality to the American optimism of old tradition. Whatever the source of his pessimism may have been, however, the line of his development was marked out, and O'Neill became by degrees the uniquely and fiercely tragic dramatist that the world has come to know. The conception of life that he presents is not a product of elaborate thinking, but it has the genuine stamp of something lived through. It is based upon an exceedingly intense, one might say, heart-rent, realization of the austerity of life, side by side with a kind of rapture at the beauty of human destinies shaped in the struggle against odds.
         A primitive sense of tragedy, as we see, lacking moral backing and achieving no inner victory - merely the bricks and mortar for the temple of tragedy in the grand and ancient style. By his very primitiveness, however, this modern tragedian has reached the well-spring of this form of creative art, a naive and simple belief in fate. At certain stages it has contributed a stream of pulsating life-blood to his work.
         That was, however, at a later period. In his earliest dramas O'Neill was a strict and somewhat arid realist; those works we may here pass by. Of more moment were a series of one-act plays, based upon material assembled during his years at sea. They brought to the theatre something novel, and hence he attracted attention.
         Those plays were not, however, dramatically notable; properly speaking, merely short stories couched in dialogue-form; true works of art, however, of their type, and heart-stirring in their simple, rugged delineation. In one of them, The Moon of the Caribbees (1918), he attains poetic heights, partly by the tenderness in depicting the indigence of a sailor's life with its naive illusions of joy, and pertly by the artistic background of the play: dirge-like Negro songs coming from a white coral shore beneath metallically glittering palms and the great moon of the Caribbean Sea. Altogether it is a mystical weave of melancholy, primitive savagery, yearning, lunar effulgence, and oppressive desolateness.
         The drama Anna Christie (1921) achieves its most striking effect through the description of sailors' life ashore in and about waterfront saloons. The first act is O'Neill's masterpiece in the domain of strict realism, each character being depicted with supreme sureness and mastery. The content is the raising of a fallen Swedish girl to respectable human status by the strong and wholesome influences of the sea; for once pessimism is left out of the picture, the play having what is termed a happy ending.
         With his drama The Hairy Ape (1922), also concerned with sailors' lives, O'Neill launches into that expressionism which sets its stamp upon his «ideadramas». The aim of expressionism in literature and the plastic arts is difficult to determine; nor need we discuss it, since for practical purposes a brief description suffices. It endeavours to produce its effects by a sort of mathematical method; it may be said to extract the square root of the complex phenomena of reality, and build with those abstractions a new world on an enormously magnified scale. The procedure is an irksome one and can hardly be said to achieve mathematical exactitude; for a long time, however, it met with great success throughout the world.
         The Hairy Ape seeks to present on a monumental scale the rebellious slave of steam power, intoxicated with his force and with superman ideas. Outwardly he is a relapse to primitive man, and he presents himself as a kind of beast, suffering from yearning for genius. The play depicts his tragical discomfiture and ruin on being brought up against cruel society.
         Subsequently O'Neill devoted himself for a number of years to a boldly expressionistic treatment of ideas and social questions. The resulting plays have little connection with real life; the poet and dreamer isolates himself, becoming absorbed in feverishly pursued speculation and phantasy.
          The Emperor Jones (1920), as an artistic creation, stands rather by itself; through it the playwright first secured any considerable celebrity. The theme embraces the mental breakdown of a Negro despot who rules over a Negro-populated island in the West Indies. The despot perishes on the flight from his glory, hunted in the dead of night by the troll-drums of his pursuers and by recollections of the past shaping themselves as paralyzing visions. These memories stretch back beyond his own life to the dark continent of Africa. Here lies concealed the theory of the individual's unconscious inner life being the carrier of the successive stages in the evolution of the race. As to the rightness of the theory we need form no opinion; the play takes so strong a hold upon our nerves and senses that our attention is entirely absorbed.
         The «dramas of ideas» proper are too numerous and too diversified to be included in a brief survey. Their themes derive from contemporary life or from sagas and legends; all are metamorphosed by the author's fancy. They play on emotional chords all tightly strung, give amazing decorative effects, and manifest a never-failing dramatic energy. Practically speaking, everything in human life in the nature of struggle or combat has here been used as a subject for creative treatment, solutions being sought for and tried out of the spiritual or mental riddles presented. One favourite theme is the cleavage of personality that arises when an individual's true character is driven in upon itself by pressure from the world without, having to yield place to a make-believe character, its own live traits being hidden behind a mask. The dramatist's musings are apt to delve so deep that what he evolves has an urge, like deep-sea fauna, to burst asunder on being brought into the light of day. The results he achieves, however, are never without poetry; there is an abundant flow of passionate, pregnant words. The action, too, yields evidence in every case of the never-slumbering energy that is one of O'Neill's greatest gifts.
         Underneath O'Neill's fantastic love of experimenting, however, is a hint of a yearning to attain the monumental simplicity characteristic of ancient drama. In his Desire Under the Elms (1924) he made an attempt in that irection, drawing his motif from the New England farming community, hardened in te progress of generations into a type of Puritanism that had gradually come to forfeit its idealistic inspiration. The course embarked upon was to be followed with more success in the «Electra» trilogy.
         In between appeared A Play; Strange Interlude (1928), which won high praise and became renowned. It is rightly termed «A Play», for with its broad and loose-knit method of presentation it cannot be regarded as a tragedy; it would rather seem most aptly defined as a psychological novel in scenes. To its subtitle, «Strange Interlude», a direct clue is given in the course of the play: «Life, the present, is the strange interlude between the past and what is to come.» The author tries to make his idea clear, as far as possible, by resorting to a peculiar device: on the one hand, the characters speak and reply as the action of the play demands; on the other, they reveal their real natures and their recollections in the form of monologues, inaudible to the other characters upon the stage. Once again, the element of masking!
         Regarded as a psychological novel, up to the point at which it becomes too improbable for any psychology, the work is very notable for its wealth of analytical and above all intuitive acumen, and for the profound insight it displays into the inner workings of the human spirit. The training bore fruit in the real tragedy that followed, the author's grandest work: Mourning Becomes Electra (1931). Both in the story it unfolds and in the destiny-charged atmosphere enshrouding it, this play keeps close to the tradition of the ancient drama, though in both respects it is adjusted to modern life and to modem lines of thought. The scene of this tragedy of the modern-time house of Atreus is laid in the period of the great Civil War, America's Iliad. That choice lends the drama the clear perspective of the past and yet provides it with a background of intellectual life and thought sufficiently close to the present day. The most remarkable feature in the drama is the way in which the element of fate has been further developed. It is based upon up-to-date hypotheses, primarily upon the natural-scientific determinism of the doctrine of heredity, and also upon the Freudian omniscience concerning the unconscious, the nightmare dream of perverse family emotions.
         These hypotheses are not, as we know, established beyond dispute, but the all-important point regarding this drama is that its author has embraced and applied them with unflinching consistency, constructing upon their foundation a chain of events as inescapable as if they had been proclaimed by the Sphinx of Thebes herself; Thereby he has achieved a masterly example of constructive ability and elaborate motivation of plot, and one that is surely without a counterpart in the whole range of latter-day drama. This applies especially to the first two parts of the trilogy.
         Two dramas, wholly different and of a new type for O'Neill, followed. They constitute a characteristic illustration of the way he has of never resting content with a result achieved, no matter what success it may have met with. They also gave evidence of his courage, for in them he launched a challenge to a considerable section of those whose favourable opinions he had won, and even to the dictators of those opinions. Though it may not at the present time be dangerous to defy natural human feelings and conceptions, it is not by any means free from risk to prick the sensitive conscience of critics. In Ah, Wilderness (1933) the esteemed writer of tragedies astonished his admirers by presenting them with an idyllic middle-class comedy and carried his audiences with him. In its depiction of the spiritual life of young people the play contains a good deal of poetry, while its gayer scenes display unaffected humour and comedy; it is, moreover, throughout simple and human in its appeal.
         In Days Without End (1934) the dramatist tackled the problem of religion, one that he had until then touched upon only superficially, without identifying himself with it, and merely from the natural scientist's combative standpoint. In this play he showed that he had an eye for the irrational, felt the need of absolute values, and was alive to the danger of spiritual impoverishment in the empty space that will be all that is left over the hard and solid world of rationalism. The form the work took was that of a modern miracle play, and perhaps, as with his tragedies of fate, the temptation to experiment was of great importance in its origination. Strictly observing the conventions of the drama form chosen, he adopted medieval naiveté in his presentation of the struggle of good against evil, introducing, however, novel and bold features of stage technique. The principal character he cleaves into two parts, white and black, not only inwardly but also corporeally, each half leading its own independent bodily life - a species of Siamese twins contradicting each other. The result is a variation upon earlier experiments. Notwithstanding the risk attendant upon that venture, the drama is sustained by the author's rare mastery of scenic treatment, while in the spokesman of religion, a Catholic priest, O'Neill has created one of his most lifelike characters. Whether that circumstance may be interpreted as indicating a decisive change in his outlook upon life remains to be seen in the future.
         O'Neill's dramatic production has been extraordinarily comprehensive in scope, versatile in character, and abundantly fruitful in new departures; and still its originator is at a stage of vigorous development. Yet in essential matters, he himself has always been the same in the exuberant end unrestrainably lively play of his imagination, in his never-wearying delight in giving shape to the ideas, whether emanating from within or without, that have jostled one another in the depths of his contemplative nature, and, perhaps first and foremost, in his possession of a proudly and ruggedly independent character.
         In choosing Eugene O'Neill as the recipient of the 1936 Nobel Prize in iterature, the Swedish Academy can express its appreciation of his peculiar and rare literary gifts and also express their homage to his personality in these words: the Prize has been awarded to him for dramatic works of vital energy, sincerity, and intensity of feeling, stamped with an original conception of tragedy.
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