2016 Tang Prizes to Louise Arbour and US sinologist

June 22, 2016

 On 21 June 2016  it was announced that Louise Arbour, a Canadian lawyer and former United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, was named the winner of the second Tang Prize in rule of law. The Tang Prize is awarded to Arbour “for her enduring contributions to international criminal justice and the protection of human rights, to promoting peace, justice and security at home and abroad, and to working within the law to expand the frontiers of freedom for all,”  Arbour, 69, was also the chief prosecutor for the International Criminal Tribunals for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) and for Rwanda (ICTR) between 1996 and 1999. In 1998, Arbour became the first prosecutor to get a conviction of genocide in an international tribunal, when the ICTR convicted Jean-Paul Akayesu, a mayor in Rwanda, of genocide. Tribunal defined rape as a means of perpetrating genocide — the first time that rape was considered an act of genocide by an international tribunal. The following year, as the chief prosecutor for the ICTY, Arbour again made history by indicting Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic, who became the first sitting head of state to be tried for war crimes by an international tribunal.

A Tang Prize award ceremony will be held Sept. 25 in Taipei. The laureate will receive a cash prize of US$1.23 million and a research grant of up to NT$10 million to be used within five years.

The biennial Tang Prize was established in 2012 by Taiwanese entrepreneur Samuel Yin to complement the Nobel Prize and to honor top researchers and leaders in four fields: sustainable development, biopharmaceutical science, sinology and rule of law.

This year the Tang Prize in the category sinology also has a human rights component as the laureate is William Theodore de Bary, Professor Emeritus of Columbia University.

William Theodore de BaryWilliam Theodore de Bary is the former Provost of Columbia University and chair of the Department of East Asian Languages and Culture. In his academic career, which spans over seven decades, he has written and edited many works that provide enlightening insights into Confucianism. His masterpieces have centered around two major themes, the first being the discussion of the history and evolution of the Cheng-Zhu school of Neo-Confucianism. His second major theme focuses on the Confucian emphasis on the individual and freedom, advocating that Confucianism is by no means an obstacle to modernization and is instead the core foundation of culture across East Asia.

De Bary also encourages a dialogue between different cultures as the best way to showcase the value of human rights of civil society and resolve key issues facing the world today. He believes that, in a chaotic world, there is no other better remedy than encouraging dialogue and exchange.

http://focustaiwan.tw/news/aedu/201606210005.aspx

U.S. Leading Scholar of Asian Thought Awarded the 2016 Tang Prize in Sinology

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