Emily Greene Balch was an international peace leader, social reformer, and teacher who he dedicated his life to working against the war. She spearheaded the women’s peace movement that grew in the mid-20th century, co-founded the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom (WILPF, 1915) and received the Nobel Peace Prize (1946).
He graduated from Bryn Mawr College (1889) and studied Sociology and Economics. He spent 1990 pursuing an independent study of Sociologyused a European scholarship to study Economy in Paris (1890-1891) with Émile Levasseur and to write Public Assistance of the Poor (Public Assistance to the Poor) in France (1893). He completed his formal studies with independent courses at Harvard and the University of Chicago, in addition to spending a full year working in economics in Berlin (1895-1896).
For 20 years it was teacher in the University of Wellesley, Emily G. Balch sought to inspire her students to reflect and fight for the improvement of their conditions. During this time she was a member of the city council on children and urban planning and two state commissions, one on industrial education and the other on immigration.
He participated in the movements for women’s suffrage, racial justice, control of child labor, and improvement of labor; she contributed to knowledge with her research’Our Slavic Fellow-Citizens‘ (Our Slave Countrymen, 1910), a study on the concentration of American slaves and on areas of Austria and Hungary and from where they emigrated.
World War I
Balch was always concerned about peace and conscientiously followed the work of the two peace conferences (1899 and 1907) in The Hague.
The World War I (1914-1918) marked a turning point in his career, which from then on focused on need to achieve and maintain peace. He then became a reference figure in opposition to war and militarism.
After his participation in the International Women’s Congress (The Hague, 1915), founded an organization called Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom (WILPF, Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom).
Although he was not a member of the ‘Peace Ship’ of Henry Ford, if it was of his Neutral Conference for Continuing Mediation, in Stockholm (Sweden) for which he wrote a document entitled International Colonial Administrationproposing a system of administration not unlike the mandate system later accepted by the League of Nations.
When he returned to the United States he made a active campaign against the country’s entry into armed conflict. In addition, he requested an extension of his leave of absence from the Wellesley faculty. However, in 1918, after twenty years of teaching, his contract was terminated.
He accepted a position in the newsroom of The nation, attended the second edition of the International Congress of Women (Zurich, 1919) and accepted his invitation to become Secretary of the Women’s League for Peace and Freedom, based in Geneva.
“Never again can women allow themselves to believe that they are not responsible because they have no power. Public opinion is power”
From 1922, he was working in the organization on a voluntary basis. His involvement with WILPF was so full that when he received the Nobel Peace Prize he donated part of the money to the organization.
His wish was that women from different backgrounds unite in opposition to war and in their support of equality and general principles of justicedeveloping a new human identity as citizens of the world.
She affirmed that women are, in some way, accomplices in war and must stop it and work for peace: “Never again can women allow themselves to believe that they are not responsible because they have no power. Public opinion is power.”
World War II
During the interwar period, Balch put his talents at the disposal of the Government, international organizations and various types of commissions.
Her desire to overcome socioeconomic problems at a supranational level led her to support the League of Nations and the creation of the United Nations. He tried to promote international cooperation through global alliances. In addition, he had a special ability for diplomacy. Now, he always believed in alliances respecting diversity.
The World War II challenged his position completely pacifist. The Nazism It made him question the relationship between peace and justice and in the 1930s he worked to help the victims of the regime.
During this period (1939-1945) he concentrated on provide ideas for peacemost of them characterized by the internationalism.
Nobel Peace Prize
In 1946 he received the Nobel Peace Prize alongside John Raleigh Mott for their work in World War I, when they helped found the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom and campaigned against America’s entry into the armed conflict.
After receiving the Nobel Peace Prize, at the age of 79, Balch continued to participate for the cause to which he had given his life.
He also maintained his affiliation with WILPF, often acting as an honorary member. In 1959 she was co-chair of a committee to commemorate the centenary of the birth of Jane Addamsa companion from yesteryear who also won the Nobel a few years ago (1931).
Despite having lived a life of little publicity, Emily Greene Balch She was one of the most important and inspiring women of the 20th century. She believed in the possibility of a better world, a peaceful world, and she worked tirelessly and selflessly to achieve that goal.
Follow the topics that interest you
We would love to thank the author of this post for this awesome web content
Emily Greene Balch, the woman Nobel laureate who defended peace in both World Wars