06/06/2017 Culture

17 Latin Americans have won the Nobel Prize

In its more than 100 years of existence, the Nobel Prize has been delivered to 17 Latin American personalities.

Argentina has won five times. Mexico three times. Chile twice. Colombia, two. Guatemala, one. Costa Rica, one. Peru, one.


The winners have been two women and 15 men. The first to receive it was Carlos Saavedra Lamas, an Argentine who was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1936. The Chilean Gabriela Mistral was the second prize winner in 1945 for her outstanding literary career. Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Mario Vargas Llosa, Rigoberta Mechu, Adolfo Perez Esquivel, are other personalities who received such a distinction. Economics and Physics are the only categories in which no Latin American has been awarded.


Here is the complete list of the Nobel Prizes that have remained on this continent.


Nobel Peace Prize

1936: Carlos Saavedra Robles: (Argentina)

1980: Adolfo Pérez Esquivel: (Argentina)

1982: Alfonso García Robles, (Mexico)

1987: Oscar Arias Sánchez, (Costa Rica)

1992: Rigoberta Menchú, (Guatemala)

2016: Juan Manuel Santos, (Colombia)


The Guatemalan indigenous leader Rigoberta Menchú, won as a human rights defender the Nobel Peace Prize in 1992. Photo: Archive LANA



Juan Manuel Santos Calderón is a Colombian politician, journalist and economist, current president of Colombia won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2016. Photo: Archive LANA



Nobel Prize in Medicine

1947: Bernardo Houssay, (Argentina)

1980: Baruj Benacerraf (Venezuela)

1984: César Milstein (Argentina)


Bernardo Houssay was an Argentine doctor that for his discoveries about the role played by pituitary hormones in regulating the amount of blood sugar (glucose), he was awarded the Nobel Prize for Medicine in 1947. Photo: Archive LANA


Nobel Prize in Chemistry

1987: Luis Federico Leloir (Argentina)

1995: Mario José Molina Pasquel Herníquez (Mexico)


Luis Leloir was an Argentine doctor, biochemist and pharmacist who received the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1970. Photo: Archive LANA


Nobel Prize in Literature

1945: Gabriela mistral (Chile)

1967: Miguel Angel Asturias (Guatemala)

1971: Pablo Neruda (Chile)

1982: Gabriel García Márquez (Colombia)

1990: Octavio Paz (Mexico)

2010: Mario Vargas Llosa (Peru)


Pablo Neruda was a Chilean poet, considered among the most outstanding and influential artists of his century won a Nobel Prize in Literature. Photo: Archive LANA


Gabriel García Márquez was a Colombian writer, editor and journalist who won a Nobel Prize in Literature in 1982. Photo: Archive LANA

The Peruvian writer Mario Vargas Llosa, won the Nobel Prize in Literature in 2010. Photo: Archive LANA