Fridtjof Nansen

Before the little known Fridtjof Nansen began helping people, there were over 1,000,000 refugees in the world, when he died in 1930 there were fewer than 500,000 (Biography).

Fridtjof Nansen aided millions of people in his lifetime, not only refugees but the poor and starving. His efforts have affected millions of people. The Norwegian man was a wealthy, educated, and outdoorsy person whose selfless behavior impacted millions.Along with his humanitarian work, he made advances in science and exploration. Fridtjof Nansen’s amazing scientific and incredible humanitarian work has changed the world.

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Fridtjof Nansen’s life before he became a humanitarian greatly affected how he did his humanitarian work. Having been born in the small Norwegian village of Store- Froen, Nansen developed his love of skiing and the outdoors as a young man (Biographical). It was said that Nansen could ski “50 miles a day. . .

(and had) the psychological self-reliance to embark on long trips, with a minimum of heat and only his dog for company,” (Biographical). In his childhood Nansen excelled in science, and continued his education at the University of Oslo. He studied zoology in Oslo and had great academic success. After he completed his doctorate, he had several curator positions at prestigious museums and made great strides in research of the central nervous system and marine zoology (World). Along with his scientific work, Fridtjof Nansen was a great explorer. He went on two major trips, one to map and explore central Greenland, and a trip to explore the north polar basin (World).

His childhood, scientific work, and geologic explorations made Fridtjof Nansen the logical and kind human he was. Fridtjof Nansen’s success as a humanitarian was developed and encouraged by many people and events. His parents had a lot of influence on Nansen. His mother, a strong minded athletic woman encouraged Nansen to be outdoorsy, and sparked his love of skiing (Biographical). However, his father affected Nansen is a very different way. Nansen’s father was a lawyer who showed him the significance of strong moral principles (Biographical).

Later in his life, when Norway began to think of declaring independence from Sweden, Nansen’s political mindset completely changed (Fuller). Nansen was a proud Norwegian and he left his scientific studies to encourage Norway’s independence (Biographical). This act of patriotism got him the job as the prime minister to the United States and made him more politically involved (Biographical). Because of the great things that inspired Fridtjof Nansen, he was able to do the great humanitarian work that he did. Nansen had four major acts of humanity; these four acts helped over 1.5 million people.

First, Fridtjof Nansen was asked by the League of Nations (a group of relief organizations like the red cross) to help Prisoners of war being held in Asia minor in 1920 (Biographical). He helped recover 450,000 people in only a Year and a half. He did this by inventing the Nansen passport, which he invented for the Russian, Turkish, Armenian, and Assyrian people he helped (Biographical). Earlier in 1908, 20,000 Armenians were slaughtered by the Turks (Fuller).In 1920, Fridtjof Nansen was sent by the League of Nations to help the Armenian people (Biographical). He built a national home for the Armenians and relocated 50,000 Armenians in Syria and Lebanon (Fuller).

During his work, Nansen discovered that the murder of the Armenians was an official government policy and classified it as genocide (Biographical).After his work helping the Russian prisoners and Armenians, Nansen helped people in the Russian famine of 1922. He directed provisions, relief, and aid to 10-22 million Russians (Biographical). After his great work with the Russians, the Greek government asked Nansen to help them with their issues with Turkey. He exchanged 1,250,000 Greek refugees living in Turkey for 500,000 Turks living in Greece (Biographical). Fridtjof Nansen’s acts of humanity impacted millions of people in a very positive way.

Nansen has impacted the world greatly. Even though he died in 1930, his legacy continues. In 1922 Fridtjof Nansen won the Nobel Peace Prize for his amazing humanitarian work (Biographical). Although it may not be as significant as the Nobel Peace Prize, oceanographers still use a form of Nansen’s technology. The Nansen bottle traps seawater to sample (World).

Besides his most well-known legacy, a foundation was established to honor his philanthropic and scientific achievements.The Fridtjof Nansen Foundation (FNI) was founded in 1958 (About). This independent foundation researches areas of Nansen’s interest like renewable energy, genetics, politics, and land management. The foundation in located in Nansen’s hometown to respect his families wishes (About). Fridtjof Nansen’s work helping reduce the amount of refugees and to help people has made a huge impact on the world (Biography).

His childhood made Nansen the kind, wonderful humanitarian he was. Nansen’s scientific background made him logical and able to solve problems.His efforts to help the Russian, Greek, and Armenian people has helped millions (Biographical). Fridtjof Nansen was an amazing, altruistic person who made the world a better place.