The "Fangenes testamente" ("The Prisoners' Testament") award is given to academics, speakers, and writers who utilize their knowledge to build bulwarks against evil and contribute to knowledge about war and peace for coming generations. It is an award instituted by former prisoners of Nazi concentration camps, who want to ensure that we utilize the knowledge and experiences generated from the horrific period of World War II, and from similar instances near and further away in history, to make sure that coming generations are taught how to avoid those evils, while never forgetting the reality of them. The award for 2015 goes to the Norwegian author Alf R. Jacobsen.
Through a series of books highlighting the lead-up to and events during World War II in Norway, Alf R. Jacobsen has contributed crucially to knowledge about the most devastating war in human history. He tells the stories vividly, yet concisely, and contributes to a renewed consciousness about the horrors of war and the dangers of totalitarianism, as well as the memory of those who contributed to fighting and defeating National Socialism.
The "Fangenes testament" award is handed out by the NGO Aktive Fredsreiser (Travel for Peace) in Risør, which collaborates with PRIO on the award. Dr. Henrik Syse represents PRIO on the award committee, and took part when the prize was handed out on Saturday, June 20, 2015. Photo Credit: Creative Commons/Susanne Hætta.