Major events, sports highlights and Nobel Prizes of 1984 - History

Major events, sports highlights and Nobel Prizes of 1984 - History

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  • Indira Gandhi murdered
  • UK and China agree on Hong Kong
  • Poison gas escapes from Union Carbide factories
  • 300 people die when Indian Army attacks the Sikh Temple
  • Moderates win elections in El Salvador
  • AIDS breaks out


NBA: Boston Celtics vs. LA Lakers Series: 4-3
NCAA Football: Brigham Young University Record: 13-0-0
Heisman Trophy: Doug Flutie, boston college, QB points: 2,240
Stanley Cup: Edmunton Oilers vs. New York Islanders Series: 4-1
Super Bowl XVIII: Los Angeles Raiders vs. Washington Redskins Score: 38-9
US Open Golf: Fuzzy Zoller Score: 276* Course: Winged Foot GC Location: Mamaroneck, NY (* Playoff with Greg Norman)
World Series: Detroit Tigers vs. San Diego Padres Series: 4-1

Hit Songs of 1984

1. "Owner of a Lonely Heart" ... Yes
2. "Karma Chamelon" ... Culture Club
3. "Jump" ... Van Halen
4. "Footloose" ... Kenny Loggins
5. "Against All Odds" ... Phil Collins
6. "Hello" ... Lionel Richie
7. " Let's Hear It For the Boy" ... Deniece Williams
8. "Time After Time" ... Cindy Lauper
9. "The Reflex" ... Duran Duran
10. "When Doves Cry" ... Prince

Top Ten Movies

1. Beverly Hills Cop
2. Footloose
3. Ghostbusters
4. Gremlins
5. Greystoke
6. The Legend of Tarzan, Lord of the Apes
7. Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom
8. The Karate Kid
9. The Natural
10. Police Academy

1. "The Talisman" by Stephen King
2. "The Aquitaine Progression" by Robert Ludlum
3. "The Sicilian" by Mario Puzo
4. "Love and War" by John Jakes
5. "The Butter Battle Book" by Dr. Seuss

1. "Iacocca: An Autobiography" by Lee Iacocca
2. "Loving Each Other" by Leo Buscaglia
3. "Eat to Win" by Robert Haas, M. D.
4. "Pieces of My Mind" by Andrew Rooney
5. "Weight Watchers' Fast and Fabulous Cookbook"

Most Popular Television Shows

1. Dynasty (ABC)
2. Dallas (CBS)
3. The Cosby Show (NBC)
4. 60 Minutes (CBS)
5. Family Ties (NBC)
6. The A-Team (NBC)
7. Simon & Simon (CBS)
8. Murder, She Wrote (CBS)
9. Knots Landing (CBS)
10. Falcon Crest (CBS)

Academy Awards

Best Picture: "Amadeus"
Best Director:Milos Forman ... "Amadeus"
Best Actor:F. Murray Abraham ... "Amadeus"
Best Actress:Sally Field ... "Places in the Heart"

Grammy Awards

Record of the Year: "What's Love Got To Do With It?" ... Tina Turner
Song of the Year: "What's Love Got To Do With It?" ...Graham Lyle, Terry Britten
Best Album: "Can't Slow Down" ... Lionel Richie
Male Vocalist: Phil Collins ... "Against All Odds (Take A Look At Me Now)" Female Vocalist:Tina Turner ... "What's Love Got To Do With It?"

Nobel Prizes

ChemistryMERRIFIELD, ROBERT BRUCE, U.S.A., Rockefeller University, New York, NY, b.1921:"for his development of methodology for chemical synthesis on a solidmatrix"••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••LiteratureEIFERT, JAROSLAV, Czechoslovakia, b. 1901, d. 1986:"for his poetry which endowed with freshness, sensuality and richinventiveness provides a liberating image of the indomitable spirit andversatility of man"••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••PeaceTUTU, DESMOND MPILO, South Africa, b. 1931: Bishop of Johannesburg, former Secretary General South African Council of Churches (S.A.C.C.). for his work against apartheid.••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••Physiology or MedicineThe prize was awarded jointly to:JERNE, NIELS K., Denmark, Basel Institute for Immunology, Basel,Switzerland, b. 1911, d. 1994;KOHLER, GEORGES J.F., Federal Republic of Germany, Basel Institute forImmunology, Basel, Switzerland, b. 1946, d. 1995; andMILSTEIN, CESAR, Great Britain and Argentina, MRC Laboratory of MolecularBiology, Cambridge, b. 1927 (in Bahia Blanca, Argentina):"for theories concerning the specificity in development and control of theimmune system and the discovery of the principle for production ofmonoclonal antibodies"••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••PhysicsThe prize was awarded jointly to:RUBBIA, CARLO, Italy, CERN, Geneva, Switzerland, b. 1934; andVAN DER MEER, SIMON, the Netherlands, CERN, Geneva, Switzerland, b. 1925:"for their decisive contributions to the large project, which led to thediscovery of the field particles W and Z, communicators of weak interaction"

Pulitzer Prizes

Drama:David Mamet ... "Glengarry Glen Ross"
Fiction:William Kennedy ... "Ironweed"
International Reporting: Thomas L. Friedman ... "New York Times" & Loren Jenkins ... "Washington Post"
National Reporting: Staff ... John Noble Wilford ... "New York Times"
Public Service:"Los Angeles Times"

Tony Awards

Best Play: "The Real Thing" ... Tom Stoppard
Best Musical: "La Cage aux Folles"
"Best Actor in a play:
Jeremy Irons ... "The Real Thing"
Best Actress in a play:Glenn Close ... "The Real Thing"
Best Actor in a musical: George Hearn ... "La Cage Aux Folles"
Best Actress in a musical:Chita Rivera ... "The Rink"

Desmond Tutu

Desmond Tutu established a career in education before turning to theology, ultimately becoming one of the world&aposs most prominent spiritual leaders. In 1978, Tutu was appointed the general secretary of his country&aposs਌ouncil of Churches and became a leading spokesperson for the rights of Black South Africans. During the 1980s, he played an almost unrivaled role in drawing national and international attention to the iniquities of apartheid, and in 1984, he won the Nobel Peace Prize for his efforts. He later chaired the Truth and Reconciliation Commission and has continued to draw attention to a number of social justice issues over the years.  

Discoverers of AIDS and Cancer Viruses Win Nobel

The Nobel Prize in Medicine was awarded Monday to three European scientists who had discovered viruses behind two devastating illnesses, AIDS and cervical cancer.

Half of the award will be shared by two French virologists, Françoise Barré-Sinoussi, 61, and Luc A. Montagnier, 76, for discovering H.I.V., the virus that causes AIDS. Conspicuously omitted was Dr. Robert C. Gallo, an American virologist who vied with the French team in a long, often acrimonious dispute over credit for the discovery of H.I.V.

The other half of the $1.4 million award will go to a German physician-scientist, Dr. Harald zur Hausen, 72, for his discovery of H.P.V., or the human papilloma virus. Dr. zur Hausen of the German Cancer Research Center in Heidelberg “went against current dogma” by postulating that the virus caused cervical cancer, said the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, which selects the medical winners of the prize, formally called the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine.

His discovery led to the development of two vaccines against cervical cancer, the second most common cancer among women. An estimated 250,000 women die of cervical cancer each year, mostly in poor countries.

This year’s Nobel Prize-winning research focused on two viruses that take many years to cause damage. Much of the research was carried out a quarter of a century or more ago.

Since its discovery in 1981, AIDS has rivaled the worst epidemics in history. An estimated 25 million people have died, and 33 million more are living with H.I.V.

In 1983, Dr. Montagnier and Dr. Barré-Sinoussi, a member of his lab at the Pasteur Institute in Paris, published their report of a newly identified virus. The Karolinska Institute said that discovery led to blood tests to detect the infection and to anti-retroviral drugs that can prolong the lives of patients. The tests are now used to screen blood donations, making the blood supply safer for transfusions and blood products.

The viral discovery has also led to an understanding of the natural history of H.I.V. infection in people, which ultimately leads to AIDS and death unless treated.

H.I.V. is a member of the lentivirus family of viruses. The French scientists were cited for identifying a virus they called L.A.V. (now known as H.I.V.) in lymph nodes from early and late stages of the infection.

“Never before has science and medicine been so quick to discover, identify the origin and provide treatment for a new disease entity,” the Karolinska Institute said.

Reached by the Nobel committee in Abidjan, Ivory Coast, where he is attending an international AIDS conference, Dr. Montagnier said, “The fight is not finished” and he was now working on a way to eradicate H.I.V. in those already infected. Dr. Montagnier now works at the World Foundation for AIDS Research and Prevention in Paris. For a brief time in the late 1990s, he worked at Queens College in New York City.

Nobel Foundation rules limit the number of recipients of its medical prizes to a maximum of three each year, and omissions often create controversy.

The dispute between Dr. Gallo and the French team spanned years and sprawled from the lab into the highest levels of government. Dr. Gallo, 71, now at the University of Maryland in Baltimore, worked for many years at the National Cancer Institute in Bethesda, Md.

While in Bethesda in 1984, a year after the French team’s report, Dr. Gallo reported finding a virus that he called H.T.L.V.-3 and that was later shown to be nearly identical to the French L.A.V. After additional studies, Dr. Gallo said cultures in his laboratory had accidentally become contaminated with the French virus.

In 1986, Dr. Gallo and Dr. Montagnier shared a prestigious Lasker award, given in the United States Dr. Montagnier was cited for discovering the virus and Dr. Gallo for determining that it caused AIDS.

In 1987, President Reagan and Prime Minister Jacques Chirac of France signed an agreement to share royalties and credit for the discovery.

But Maria Masucci, a member of the Nobel Assembly, told Reuters on Monday that “there was no doubt as to who made the fundamental discoveries.”

Dr. Gallo told The Associated Press on Monday that it was “a disappointment” not to have been honored with the French team. Later, Dr. Gallo issued a statement congratulating this year’s Nobel Prize winners and said he “was gratified to read Dr. Montagnier’s kind statement this morning expressing that I was equally deserving.”

Dr. John E. Niederhuber, the director of the National Cancer Institute, said Monday that Dr. Gallo “was instrumental in every major aspect of the discovery of the AIDS virus. Dr. Gallo discovered interleukein-2 (Il-2), an immune system signaling molecule, which was necessary for the discovery of the AIDS virus, serving as a co-culture factor that allowed the virus to grow. Numerous scientific journal articles, many co-authored by Dr. Gallo and Dr. Montagnier, cite the two scientists as co-discoverers of the AIDS virus.”

Dr. Anthony S. Fauci, a virologist and immunologist who directs the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said in an interview, “The committee has a long history of awarding the prize to the person or group that makes the first seminal observation or discovery, and they did that in this case.” He added, “Nobel Prizes are always associated with great joy and great sadness, depending on who wins and who you are.”

The link between human papilloma virus and cervical cancer took years to gain acceptance. When Dr. zur Hausen proposed the connection in the 1970s, infection with papilloma virus was thought to cause nothing more serious than common warts, and the prevailing scientific view was that herpes type 2 virus caused cervical cancer. But Dr. zur Hausen consistently failed to find herpes type 2 DNA in cervical cancer cells using the newer molecular biology laboratory techniques.

In the 1980s, an American researcher said that financing agencies in the United States had rejected as unpromising his grant proposals to study links between papilloma viruses and cancer. The National Institutes of Health did not reply on Monday to questions about such proposals.

In 1983, Dr. zur Hausen discovered the first H.P.V., type 16, among biopsies of women who had cervical cancer. He went on to show that more than one H.P.V. type could lead to cervical cancer, in part by cloning H.P.V. 16 and another type, 18. Further research has shown that the two H.P.V. types are consistently found in about 70 percent of cervical cancer biopsies throughout the world, the institute said.

Of the more than 100 human papilloma viruses now known, about 40 infect the genital tract and 15 of them put women at high risk for cervical cancer. But in a vast majority of cases, the body’s immune system clears H.P.V. before the viruses cause harm. It is chronic infection that is dangerous.

H.P.V. viruses account for more than 5 percent of all cancers worldwide. Some types of H.P.V. are found in cancers of the vulva, penis, mouth and other areas. Other H.P.V. viruses cause warts on the foot and elsewhere.

Dr. zur Hausen’s research has led to development of vaccines that protect against strains of H.P.V. that cause most cases of cervical cancers. However, controversy has arisen over who should get the vaccines.

The United States Food and Drug Administration has approved one papilloma virus vaccine, Gardasil, for girls and women ages 9 to 26 and with advice that they get immunized before sexual activity begins. Because the vaccine was developed recently, doctors do not know for how long it will last.

The Nobel Prizes were created in the will of Alfred Nobel, the Swedish explosives inventor and manufacturer, who died in 1896. The first prizes were awarded in 1901.

The History of the Olympic Games

Compare the ancient Olympics to the modern games. Plus, learn how money, politics, and performance-enhancing drugs have become major influences, often causing controversy.

The Olympic Games are an international sports festival that began in ancient Greece. The original Greek games were staged every fourth year for several hundred years, until they were abolished in the early Christian era. The revival of the Olympic Games took place in 1896, and since then they have been staged every fourth year, except during World War I and World War II (1916, 1940, 1944).

Perhaps the basic difference between the ancient and modern Olympics is that the former was the ancient Greeks' way of saluting their gods, whereas the modern Games are a manner of saluting the athletic talents of citizens of all nations. The original Olympics featured competition in music, oratory, and theater performances as well. The modern Games have a more expansive athletic agenda, and for 2 and a half weeks they are supposed to replace the rancor of international conflict with friendly competition. In recent times, however, that lofty ideal has not always been attained.

The Ancient Olympics

The earliest reliable date that recorded history gives for the first Olympics is 776 B.C., although virtually all historians presume that the Games began well before then.

It is certain that during the midsummer of 776 B.C. a festival was held at Olympia on the highly civilized eastern coast of the Peloponnesian peninsula. That festival remained a regularly scheduled event, taking place during the pre-Christian golden age of Greece. As a testimony to the religious nature of the Games (which were held in honor of Zeus, the most important god in the ancient Greek pantheon), all wars would cease during the contests. According to the earliest records, only one athletic event was held in the ancient Olympics &mdash a footrace of about 183 m (200 yd), or the length of the stadium. A cook, Coroibus of Elis, was the first recorded winner. The first few Olympics had only local appeal and were limited to one race on one day only men were allowed to compete or attend. A second race &mdash twice the length of the stadium &mdash was added in the 14th Olympics, and a still longer race was added to the next competition, four years later.

When the powerful, warlike Spartans began to compete, they influenced the agenda. The 18th Olympiad included wrestling and a pentathlon consisting of running, jumping, spear throwing (the javelin), discus throwing, and wrestling. Boxing was added at the 23rd Olympiad, and the Games continued to expand, with the addition of chariot racing and other sports. In the 37th Olympiad (632 B.C.) the format was extended to five days of competition.

The growth of the Games fostered "professionalism" among the competitors, and the Olympic ideals waned as royalty began to compete for personal gain, particularly in the chariot events. Human beings were being glorified as well as the gods many winners erected statues to deify themselves. In A.D. 394 the Games were officially ended by the Roman emperor Theodosius I, who felt that they had pagan connotations.

The Modern Olympics

The revival of the Olympic Games in 1896, unlike the original Games, has a clear, concise history. Pierre de Coubertin (1863&ndash1937), a young French nobleman, felt that he could institute an educational program in France that approximated the ancient Greek notion of a balanced development of mind and body. The Greeks themselves had tried to revive the Olympics by holding local athletic games in Athens during the 1800s, but without lasting success. It was Baron de Coubertin's determination and organizational genius, however, that gave impetus to the modern Olympic movement. In 1892 he addressed a meeting of the Union des Sports Athlétiques in Paris. Despite meager response he persisted, and an international sports congress eventually convened on June 16, 1894. With delegates from Belgium, England, France, Greece, Italy, Russia, Spain, Sweden, and the United States in attendance, he advocated the revival of the Olympic Games. He found ready and unanimous support from the nine countries. De Coubertin had initially planned to hold the Olympic Games in France, but the representatives convinced him that Greece was the appropriate country to host the first modern Olympics. The council did agree that the Olympics would move every four years to other great cities of the world.

Thirteen countries competed at the Athens Games in 1896. Nine sports were on the agenda: cycling, fencing, gymnastics, lawn tennis, shooting, swimming, track and field, weight lifting, and wrestling. The 14-man U.S. team dominated the track and field events, taking first place in 9 of the 12 events. The Games were a success, and a second Olympiad, to be held in France, was scheduled. Olympic Games were held in 1900 and 1904, and by 1908 the number of competitors more than quadrupled the number at Athens &mdash from 311 to 2,082.

Beginning in 1924, a Winter Olympics was included &mdash to be held at a separate cold-weather sports site in the same year as the Summer Games &mdash the first held at Chamonix, France. In 1980 about 1,600 athletes from 38 nations competed at Lake Placid, N.Y., in a program that included Alpine and Nordic skiing, biathlon, ice hockey, figure skating and speed skating, bobsled, and luge.

But the Summer Games, with its wide array of events, are still the focal point of the modern Olympics. Among the standard events are basketball, boxing, canoeing and kayaking, cycling, equestrian arts, fencing, field hockey, gymnastics, modern pentathlon, rowing, shooting, soccer, swimming and diving, tennis, track and field, volleyball, water polo, weight lifting, wrestling (freestyle and Greco-Roman), and yachting. New sports are added to the roster at every Olympic Games among the more prominent are baseball, martial arts, and most recently triathlon, which was first contested at the 2000 Games. The Games are governed by the International Olympic Committee (IOC), whose headquarters is in Lausanne, Switzerland.

The Summer and Winter Games were traditionally held in the same year, but because of the increasing size of both Olympics, the Winter Games were shifted to a different schedule after 1992. They were held in Lillehammer, Norway in 1994, in Nagano, Japan in 1998, in Salt Lake City, Utah in 2002, in Turin, Italy in 2006, and in 2010, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.

Politics and the Olympics

The ideology of nationalism, which swept the world during the early 20th century, left its mark on the Olympics. Athletic nationalism was brought to a peak by Nazi Germany, which staged the 1936 Games in Berlin and used the Olympics to propagandize its cause. The Germans built a powerful team through nationalized training and scientific advances and dominated the Games in terms of medals won.

The political overtones of the Olympics did not lessen with the fall of Nazi Germany. In 1956, Egypt, Iraq, and Lebanon boycotted the Melbourne Games to protest the Anglo-French seizure of the Suez Canal, and the Netherlands, Spain, and Switzerland boycotted as well to protest the USSR's invasion of Hungary. In Mexico City in 1968, two African American runners used the victory pedestal to protest U.S. racial policies. In the Munich Olympics in 1972, 11 Israeli athletes were massacred by Palestinian terrorists. And in 1976 in Montreal, 33 African nations, to be represented by about 400 athletes, boycotted the Games to protest South Africa's apartheid policies.

The most serious disruptions to the modern Olympics, however, occurred in 1980 and 1984. In 1980, under strong pressure from the Carter administration, the U.S. Olympic Committee voted to boycott the Summer Games in Moscow to protest the 1979 Soviet invasion of Afghanistan. About 40 nations followed suit, including West Germany, China, and Japan, depriving the Soviets of their chief athletic competition and raising doubts about the future of the Olympic movement. Although the 1984 Winter Games, in Sarajevo, Yugoslavia, proceeded without boycotts, the Summer Games, in Los Angeles, were undercut by an Eastern-bloc boycott led by the USSR. Fear of an openly hostile environment in Los Angeles was cited by the Soviet Olympic Committee as the reason for nonparticipation, but most commentators believed the reasons to be political: the poor state of recent U.S.-Soviet relations, revenge for the U.S. boycott in 1980, and possible embarrassment to the Soviets on worldwide television caused by planned anti-Soviet demonstrations and defections of Eastern-bloc athletes. The popularity and financial success of the 1984 Los Angeles Games were, however, greater than anticipated.

In 1988 the Winter Games &mdash in Calgary, Alberta, Canada &mdash went on without incident. At the Summer Games, in Seoul, South Korea, only six nations (including Cuba and North Korea) boycotted, and the focus returned to the athletes.The 1992 Winter and Summer Games (in Albertville, France, and Barcelona, Spain, respectively) were the first Olympics without the Eastern-bloc sports machine, were the last for the "Unified Teams" from the former USSR, and marked the return of South Africa to Olympic competition. The 1996 Summer Games, in Atlanta, Ga., were the largest ever they were marred by a bombing that took the lives of two people. The 1994 and 1998 Winter Games transpired without incident. The 2000 Summer Games were held in Sydney, Australia, to great acclaim. In Sydney, politics took a back seat to the competition, although North and South Korea were temporarily reunited as their athletes marched as one country in the opening ceremonies. Athens, Greece &mdash site of the first modern Olympics &mdash was the site of the Summer Games in 2004. Though it has potential for political controversies due to its rapid modernization and its communist state-Beijing, China was selected for the 2008 Summer Games.

Money and the Olympics

The biggest influence on the modern Olympic Games is money. Commercialism exists side by side with the outstanding athleticism and the spirit of friendship imbuing competitors from around the world. Since the 1984 Games in Los Angeles, it has become clear that a city hosting the Games can anticipate a financial windfall, as spectators and sponsors converge for the event. Because of the tremendous potential for profit, the process of selecting host cities has become politicized, and there is a large potential for corruption. In fact, a scandal erupted in late 1998, when it was found that promoters involved with Salt Lake City's (winning) bid for the 2002 Winter Games had bribed IOC members, who were forced to resign the Nagano and Sydney bids were also under suspicion of bribery.

Athletes, too, especially in the "glamour sports" such as gymnastics, ice skating, or track and field, can reap tremendous financial gains for winning performances, through product endorsements and personal appearances. Originally, Olympic athletes were expected to remain strictly amateurs and not earn money even for endorsing products. However, by the last decades of the 20th century, professionalism among competitors received official acceptance, as the IOC finally recognized that many world-class athletes were already functioning as professionals. At the elite level of competition in many Olympic sports, the athlete must devote him- or herself entirely to the sport, all but precluding the holding of a full-time job.

The end of amateurism began in 1960s in the Communist countries, where top athletes were supported by the state, but were officially considered amateurs. To counter this, in the 1970s and 1980s athletes in non-Communist countries sought out corporate sponsors, in effect becoming "employees" of the sponsor. By the late 1980s, restrictions were eased on athletes earning prize money at their sports, and professional athletes were permitted to represent their countries at the Olympics. This now includes the star athletes who play in the American professional leagues, such as the U.S. basketball "Dream Team" of National Basketball Association superstars who dominated the 1992 Olympic competition. In addition, with IOC rules concerning amateurism vacated, many medal-winning contestants have cashed in on their Olympic fame with product endorsements or performance tours.

Performance-Enhancing Drugs

Winning medals at the Olympic Games has always been considered the most prestigious mark of an athlete, and a source of glory for the athlete's country. This has led to the use of performance-enhancing drugs by athletes, intentionally or otherwise, despite the health risks to the athlete and IOC rules prohibiting the use of these substances. The types of drugs banned include stimulants (which can be found in common cold and cough medications caffeine is also banned), narcotics, anabolic steroids, diuretics, certain hormones (such as human growth hormone), and in some sports, beta blockers. The testing of athletes for drug use began for the Olympics in 1968, at the Mexico City Games, but did not become widespread until the 1972 Games. Over the years, as drugs such as human growth hormone have been developed, tests have been added for newer drugs.

With such great rewards at stake, there are athletes and even national sports programs willing to use performance-enhancing drugs despite the risks to future health and the disgrace of getting caught. The best-known example of drug use is the East German sports federation, which had a systematic program for giving its athletes steroids from 1974 to 1989. During that time East German women suddenly dominated events such as swimming, winning medals in 11 of 13 events both in 1976 and 1980. Other swimmers suspected that the East German women were using steroids, because the drugs affected their physical appearance, but the team was never caught. After the reunification of Germany, the East German sports federation's records were opened and the program was exposed. In 2000 the former head of the federation and the doctor who developed and administered the drug plan were convicted of systematic and overall doping. The former athletes maintain that they never knew they were taking steroids, claiming that they were told that the various medications were vitamins. As drug testing procedures have improved, more athletes have been caught. In Seoul there was suspicion of widespread use of performance-enhancing drugs after Canadian sprinter Ben Johnson tested positive he was stripped of his gold medal. In the mid-1990s, China's female swimmers and runners quickly rose to the top of elite competition, arousing suspicions of drug use by the late 1990s many were caught through more diligent drug testing.

The IOC publicly decries the use of performance-enhancing drugs. However, it is commonly believed that even with out-of-competition testing, the drugs and masking agents available to athletes is far ahead of the tests used to detect these substances. A study released in September 2000 that was financed by the U.S. government accused the IOC of permitting drug use to persist in order to maintain the mystique of the Olympics and record-breaking performances. The IOC formed the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) in late 1999 to test athletes at the upcoming Olympics and to increase drug testing standards, but how effective WADA will be in the long run is not yet known.

Bibliography: Finding, John E., and Pelle, Kimberly D., Historical Dictionary of the Modern Olympic Movement (1996) Greenberg, Stan, Guinness Book of Olympic Records (1992) Guttmann, Allen, The Olympics (1992) Henry, Bill, et al., An Approved History of the Olympic Games (1984) Hill, Christopher, Olympic Politics: Athens to Atlanta, 1896&ndash1996, 2d ed. (1997) Swaddling, Judith, The Ancient Olympic Games, 2d ed. (2000) Wallechinsky, David, The Complete Book of the Summer Olympics: Sydney 2000 Edition (2000) Young, David C., The Modern Olympics: A Struggle for Revival (1996).

Historical Events in 1901

Event of Interest

Event of Interest

Jan 22 After 63 years Britain stops sale of Queen Victoria postage stamps series & begins King Edward VII series

    Emily Hobhouse views the British administrated concentration camp at Bloemfontein for women and children Denmark and the US sign a treaty under which Denmark will sell the Danish West Indies to the USA for $5 million, but the sale will be postponed until 1917 Boer generals Jan Smuts & De la Rey conqueror Mud river, Transvaal

Event of Interest

Jan 31 Chekhov's "Three Sisters" opens at Moscow Art Theater

    Stanley Cup, Montreal Arena, Westmount, Quebec: Winnipeg Victorias edge Montreal Shamrocks, 2-1 to sweep challenge series, 2-0 Austro-Hungarian Empire: The Reichsrath, dissolved on September 7, 1900, by Emperor Franz Joseph, reopens after the recent elections sees the defeat of extremists Female Army Nurse Corps established as a permanent organization

Queen Victoria's Funeral

Feb 2 Queen Victoria's funeral takes place in St. George's Chapel, Windsor Castle, England

The funeral cortege of Queen Victoria outside St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle on February 2, 1901

Event of Interest

Feb 4 Emperor of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, Franz Joseph I, gives a speech condemning the demands of national groups and calls for economic and social reform

    Loop-the-loop centrifugal RR (roller coaster) patented by Ed Prescot Pierpont Morgan forms US Steel Corp Dutch Penitentiary children's law proclaimed H Cecil Booth patented a dust removing suction cleaner

Event of Interest

Feb 18 Winston Churchill makes his maiden speech in the British House of Commons.

    1st territorial legislature of Hawaii convenes In Cuba, the constitutional delegates adopt a constitution much like that of the USA George Cohan's musical "Governor's Son" premieres in NYC

Event of Interest

Feb 25 US Steel Corporation organized under J. P. Morgan, Sr.

Event of Interest

Feb 26 British General Kitchener confers with Boer general Louis Botha about peace conditions, which break down over the question of amnesty for some Boers

    NL Rules Committee decrees that all fouls are to count as strikes except after two strikes A General Committee of National Liberal Federation meets and adopts a resolution deploring the continuation of the war in South Africa and condemning the British Government's insistence on unconditional surrender by the Boers Hawaii's first telegraph company opens United States Congress passes the Platt amendment, limiting the autonomy of Cuba as a condition for the withdrawal of American troops US Congress creates National Bureau of Standards, in Department of Commerce 1st advanced copy of inaugural speech (Jefferson-National Intelligencer)

President Inaugurated

Mar 4 William McKinley inaugurated for 2nd term as US president Theodore Roosevelt serves as Vice President

Event of Interest

Mar 6 In Bremen an assassin attempts to kill Kaiser Wilhelm II of Germany.

    Cincinnati Enquirer reports Baltimore manager John McGraw signed Cherokee Indian Tokohoma, who is really black 2nd baseman Charlie Grant Ground is broken for Boston's 1st AL ballpark (Huntington Ave Grounds)

Music Premiere

Mar 14 1st performance of Anton Bruckner's 6th Symphony in A

    Germany's Chancellor von Bulow declares that the agreement Germany signed with Great Britain in October 1900, to restrain foreign aggression and maintain open trade, does not apply to Manchuria Horse racing is banned in San Francisco, last race March 16th Free thinking-Democratic Union forms in Netherlands

Event of Interest

Mar 17 At a show in Paris 71 Vincent van Gogh paintings cause a sensation, 11 years after his death

    Dame Nellie Melba reveals secret of her now famous toast 55 die as Rock Island train derailed near Marshalltown, Iowa Edmund Barton is elected Prime Minister in Australia's first parliamentary election 63rd Grand National: Jockey Arthur Nightingall wins his 3rd GN aboard 9/1 shot Grudon in a howling snowstorm Under threats from the Ottoman Turkish Government, Bulgaria is forced to arrest the leaders of the Macedonian Committee SDAP demands general voting right, abolishing First Chamber 1st British motorized burial 5th Boston Marathon won for second straight year by Canadian Jim Caffrey in race record 2:29:23.6 Pope Leo XIII issues an allocution deploring hostile actions against the Roman Catholic Church throughout Europe

Philippine Revolution

Apr 19 In the Philippines, recently captured insurgent leader Emilio Aguinaldo issues a proclamation advising his countrymen to end their rebellion and use of peaceful means to work with the US toward independence.

    The Chicago White Stockings win against the Cleveland Blues in the 1st game played in baseball's American League

First Australian Parliament

May 9 The first Australian Parliament opens in Melbourne, though the first working session will not be until 21 May

Federal Labor Party MPs elected to the Australian House of Representatives and Senate at the first 1901 election
    A financial panic begins in the USA following the struggle between two groups to control the railroads between the Great Lakes and the Pacific US President McKinley visits San Francisco 35th Belmont: H Spencer aboard Commando wins in 2:21 Ottawa Mint Act receives Royal Assent US captures leader of Filipino rebels, Emilio Aguinaldo

Music Premiere

May 29 Ignacy Jan Paderewski's opera "Manru" has its world premiere in Dresden

    Hall of Fame for Great American on NYU campus dedicated At the opening of the Greek National Assembly, Prince George, High Commissioner of Crete, asks it to endorse the union of Crete with Greece the proposal is later rejected Benjamin Adams arrested for playing golf on Sunday (NY) British Open Men's Golf, Muirfield: Scotsman James Braid wins first of 5 Open titles by 3 strokes from Harry Vardon of Jersey NY Giants get record 31 hits to beat Cincinnati Reds 25-13 Cook Islands annexed and proclaimed part of New Zealand In Cuba, the constitutional convention - knowing that the USA will not withdraw its troops until does so - adopts the Platt Amendment as part of its constitution US Open Men's Golf, Myopia Hunt GC: Willie Anderson of Scotland wins first of his 4 Open titles by 1 stroke in an 18-hole playoff with Alex Smith The College Board introduces its first standardized test, the forerunner to the SAT Charlotte Maxeke becomes the first native African to graduate from a US college (Wilberforce University in Ohio)

Event of Interest

Jun 24 1st exhibition by Pablo Picasso aged 19, opens in Paris

    Jewish National Fund starts US National Championship Women's Tennis, Philadelphia CC: Elisabeth Moore beats defending champion Myrtle McAteer 6-4, 3-6, 7-5, 2-6, 6-2 for her second of 4 US singles titles Wimbledon Men's Tennis: Arthur Gore beats defending 4-time champion R.F. Doherty 4-6, 7-5, 6-4, 6-4 for his 1st of 3 Wimbledon singles titles

Event of Interest

Jul 2 Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid rob train of $40,000 at Wagner, Montana

Fleeing Europe

With Adolf Hitler&aposs rise in power, Bohr was able to offer German Jewish physicists refuge at his institute in Copenhagen, which in turn led to travel to the United States for many. Once Denmark became occupied by Nazi forces, the Bohr family escaped to Sweden, with Bohr and his son Aage eventually making their way to the United States. Bohr then worked with the Manhattan Project in Los Alamos, New Mexico, where the first atomic bomb was being created. Because he had concerns about how the bomb could be used, he called for future international arms control and active communication about the weapon between nations — an idea met with resistance by Winston Churchill and Franklin D. Roosevelt.

Now known as The Man Booker Prize for Fiction, this is Britain’s most prestigious literary award. It’s handed out every year to one author whose outstanding novel was published during the previous 12 months. Being shortlisted to receive a Man Booker Prize is considered an honor in its own right as well.

Perhaps the most well-known award in American cinema, the Oscars are handed out every year to actors, directors, producers and film professionals who worked on the previous year’s best films. The Academy Awards ceremony was inaugurated in 1929, and the event’s broadcast now draws more than a billion viewers worldwide.

Billie Jean King

As one of the most celebrated tennis players in history, and one of the 20th century’s most respected women, Billie Jean King has dedicated her life to breaking barriers both on and off the tennis court.

Billie Jean Moffit began playing tennis at the age of 11. After one of her first tennis lessons, she told her mother, “I’m going to be No. 1 in the world”, a title she would come to hold five times between 1966 and 1972.

For more than 20 years, King dominated the world of tennis. As a player, she won 39 Grand Slam singles, doubles and mixed doubles tennis titles, including a record 20 titles at Wimbledon. In 1973, King defeated Bobby Riggs in the most talked-about tennis match in history. The “Battle of the Sexes” was a turning point for women in athletics, proving that skill is not dependent upon gender.

King’s efforts turned women’s tennis into a major professional sport. Outraged at the disparity between men’s and women’s prizes at major tournaments, King spearheaded the drive for equal prize money and equal treatment of women. She helped establish the Virginia Slims Tour, founded the Women’s Tennis Association and the Women’s Sports Foundation, and co-founded World TeamTennis.

As a female athlete, King achieved a number of “firsts”. In 1971, she became the first female athlete in any sport to earn more than $100,000 in a single season, and in 1974, she became the first woman to coach a co-ed team in professional sports, the Philadelphia Freedoms. In 1984, King became the first woman commissioner in professional sports history.

In honor of her contributions to tennis, sports and society, the National Tennis Center was renamed the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in 2006. In the same year, the Sports Museum of America and the Women’s Sports Foundation announced the Billie Jean King International Women’s Sports Center.

King is the author of numerous books, including, Pressure is a Privilege: Lessons I”ve Learned from Life and the Battle of the Sexes. In 2009, she was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation’s highest civilian honor.

King’s groundbreaking achievements spearheaded the women’s movement in tennis, affording today’s female athletes equal opportunity in the world of sports.

Year Honored: 1990

Birth: 1943 -

Born In: California

Achievements: Athletics

Educated In: California

Schools Attended: Long Beach Polytechnic High School California State University, Los Angeles


  • Gov. Gray Davis announces the creation of the California NanoSystems Institute, a partnership of UCLA and UC Santa Barbara, and one of three California Institutes for Science and Innovation.
  • After three years of construction, UCLA Housing opens the doors to DeNeve Plaza, its newest addition to the northwest campus student housing community.
  • The campus marks Sept. 11 terrorist attacks with a memorial service in Royce Quad faculty quickly create 50 “Perspective on Sept. 11” seminars geared toward freshmen and sophomore students more than 650 students sign up in Fall Quarter.
  • Entertainment magnate David Geffen donates an unrestricted $200 million gift to the medical school, which is renamed the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. The gift is the largest single donation of its kind to a school of medicine in the United States, and the largest donation ever made in the UC system.
  • The successful separation surgery of conjoined Guatemalan twins at UCLA’s Mattel Children’s Hospital captures the attention of the world.
  • Center for Community Partnerships, the operational arm of the “UCLA in LA” program, is created to foster relationships between UCLA and the greater Los Angeles area.
  • The College and professional schools offer “Fiat Lux” seminars, which evolved out of the Sept. 11 series, giving freshmen the chance to enroll in small classes taught by distinguished professors.
  • After a six-year absence, the Homecoming Parade returns to the streets of Westwood. The event is part of a revitalized Homecoming & Parents’ Weekend.
  • Campaign UCLA extends its goal: to raise $2.4 billion by 2005.
  • Enrollment exceeds 38,500.
  • The basketball court in Pauley Pavilion is named the Nell & John Wooden Court in honor of the legendary former coach and his late wife of 53 years.
  • The UCLA Department of Chicana and Chicano Studies is created.
  • Graduate student housing opens. About 1,400 graduate students make their home in Weyburn Terrace. Undergraduate Residential Plaza buildings Rieber Vista and Hedrick Summit open.
  • Library hits 8 million volumes.
  • Campaign UCLA officially wraps up raising $3 billion.
  • Eli and Edythe Broad Art Center (formerly the Dickson Art Center) opens as the permanent home of the UCLA Department of Art and the UCLA Design/Media Arts Department.
  • UCLA becomes first university in the nation to reach 100 NCAA National Championship victories.
  • University of Virginia Provost Gene Block begins service as UCLA’s ninth chief executive.
  • Spieker Aquatics Center opens.
  • More than 4,000 students, staff, faculty and alumni leaders take part in the inaugural UCLA Volunteer Day, visiting locations around Los Angeles to improve schools, restore beaches, and clean parks.

A scientific breakthrough

The sentence "This structure has novel features which are of considerable biological interest" may be one of science's most famous understatements. It appeared in April 1953 in the scientific paper where James Watson and Francis Crick presented the structure of the DNA-helix, the molecule that carries genetic information from one generation to the other.

Nine years later, in 1962, they shared the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine with Maurice Wilkins, for solving one of the most important of all biological riddles. Half a century later, important new implications of this contribution to science are still coming to light.

What is DNA?

The work of many scientists paved the way for the exploration of DNA. Way back in 1868, almost a century before the Nobel Prize was awarded to Watson, Crick and Wilkins, a young Swiss physician named Friedrich Miescher, isolated something no one had ever seen before from the nuclei of cells. He called the compound "nuclein." This is today called nucleic acid, the "NA" in DNA (deoxyribo-nucleic-acid) and RNA (ribo-nucleic-acid).

Francis Crick and James Watson, 1953.
Photo: Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Archives
Maurice Wilkins.

Two years earlier, the Czech monk Gregor Mendel, had finished a series of experiments with peas. His observations turned out to be closely connected to the finding of nuclein. Mendel was able to show that certain traits in the peas, such as their shape or color, were inherited in different packages. These packages are what we now call genes.

For a long time the connection between nucleic acid and genes was not known. But in 1944 the American scientist Oswald Avery managed to transfer the ability to cause disease from one strain of bacteria to another. But not only that: the previously harmless bacteria could also pass the trait along to the next generation. What Avery had moved was nucleic acid. This proved that genes were made up of nucleic acid.

Solving the puzzle

In the late 1940's, the members of the scientific community were aware that DNA was most likely the molecule of life, even though many were skeptical since it was so "simple." They also knew that DNA included different amounts of the four bases adenine, thymine, guanine and cytosine (usually abbreviated A, T, G and C), but nobody had the slightest idea of what the molecule might look like.

In order to solve the elusive structure of DNA, a couple of distinct pieces of information needed to be put together. One was that the phosphate backbone was on the outside with bases on the inside another that the molecule was a double helix. It was also important to figure out that the two strands run in opposite directions and that the molecule had a specific base pairing.

As in the solving of other complex problems, the work of many people was needed to establish the full picture.

The original DNA model by Watson and Crick.
Photo: Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Archives

Using X-rays to see through DNA

Watson and Crick used stick-and-ball models to test their ideas on the possible structure of DNA. Other scientists used experimental methods instead. Among them were Rosalind Franklin and Maurice Wilkins, who were using X-ray diffraction to understand the physical structure of the DNA molecule.

When you shine X-rays on any kind of crystal – and some biological molecules, such as DNA, can form crystals if treated in certain ways – the invisible rays bounce off the sample. The rays then create complex patterns on photographic film. By looking at the patterns, it is possible to figure out important clues about the structures that make up the crystal.

"Photograph 51". X-ray diffraction photo of a DNA molecule, structure B.
Photo: Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Archives

A three-helical structure?

The scientist Linus Pauling was eager to solve the mystery of the shape of DNA. In 1954 he became a Nobel Laureate in Chemistry for his ground-breaking work on chemical bonds and the structure of molecules and crystals. In early 1953 he had published a paper where he proposed a triple-helical structure for DNA. Watson and Crick had also previously worked out a three-helical model, in 1951. But their theory was wrong.

Their mistake was partly based on Watson having misremembered a talk by Rosalind Franklin where she reported that she had established the water content of DNA by using X-ray crystallographic methods. But Watson did not take notes, and remembered the numbers incorrectly.

Instead, it was Franklin's famous "photograph 51" that finally revealed the helical structure of DNA to Watson and Crick in 1953. This picture of DNA that had been crystallized under moist conditions shows a fuzzy X in the middle of the molecule, a pattern indicating a helical structure.

Model of the alpha helix, 1951. Photo: Oregon State University's Special Collections

Specific base-pairing

The base-pairing mystery had been partly solved by the biochemist Erwin Chargoff some years earlier. In 1949 he showed that even though different organisms have different amounts of DNA, the amount of adenine always equals the amount of thymine. The same goes for the pair guanine and cytosine. For example, human DNA contains about 30 percent each of adenine and thymine, and 20 percent each of guanine and cytosine.

With this information at hand Watson was able to figure out the pairing rules. On the 21st of February 1953 he had the key insight, when he saw that the adenine-thymine bond was exactly as long as the cytosine-guanine bond. If the bases were paired in this way, each rung of the twisted ladder in the helix would be of equal length, and the sugar-phosphate backbone would be smooth.

Structure shows action

"It has not escaped our notice that the specific pairing we have postulated immediately suggests a possible copying mechanism for the genetic material" wrote Watson and Crick in the scientific paper that was published in Nature, April 25, 1953.

This was indeed a breakthrough in the study of how genetic material passes from generation to generation. Once the model was established, its mere structure hinted that DNA was indeed the carrier of the genetic code and thus the key molecule of heredity, developmental biology and evolution.

The specific base pairing underlies the perfect copying of the molecule, which is essential for heredity. During cell division, the DNA molecule is able to "unzip" into two pieces. One new molecule is formed from each half-ladder, and due to the specific pairing this gives rise to two identical daughter copies from each parent molecule.

We all share the same building blocks

DNA is a winning formula for packaging genetic material. Therefore almost all organisms – bacteria, plants, yeast and animals – carry genetic information encapsulated as DNA. One exception is some viruses that use RNA instead.

Different species need different amounts of DNA. Therefore the copying of the DNA that precedes cell division differs between organisms. For example, the DNA in E. coli bacteria is made up of 4 million base pairs and the whole genome is thus one millimeter long. The single-cell bacterium can copy its genome and divide into two cells once every 20 minutes.

The DNA of humans, on the other hand, is composed of approximately 3 billion base pairs, making up a total of almost a meter-long stretch of DNA in every cell in our bodies.

In order to fit, the DNA must be packaged in a very compact form. In E. coli the single circular DNA molecule is curled up in a condensed fashion, whereas the human DNA is packaged in 23 distinct chromosome pairs. Here the genetic material is tightly rolled up on structures called histones.

A new biological era

This knowledge of how genetic material is stored and copied has given rise to a new way of looking at and manipulating biological processes, called molecular biology. With the help of so-called restriction enzymes, molecules that cut the DNA at particular stretches, pieces of DNA can be cut out or inserted at different places.

In basic science, where you want to understand the role of all the different genes in humans and animals, new techniques have been developed. For one thing, it is now possible to make mice that are genetically modified and lack particular genes. By studying these animals scientists try to figure out what that gene may be used for in normal mice. This is called the knockout technique, since stretches of DNA have been taken away, or knocked out.

Scientists have also been able to insert new bits of DNA into cells that lack particular pieces of genes or whole genes. With this new DNA, the cell becomes capable of producing gene products it could not make before. The hope is that, in the future, diseases that arise due to the lack of a particular protein could be treated by this kind of gene therapy.

Was Rosalind Franklin nominated?

Rosalind Franklin.
Photo: Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Archives

Many voices have argued that the Nobel Prize should also have been awarded to Rosalind Franklin, since her experimental data provided a very important piece of evidence leading to the solving of the DNA structure. In a recent interview in the magazine Scientific American, Watson himself suggested that it might have been a good idea to give Wilkins and Franklin the Nobel Prize in Chemistry, and him and Crick the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine – in that way all four would have been honored.

Rosalind Franklin died in 1958. As a rule only living persons can be nominated for the Nobel Prize, so the 1962 Nobel Prize was out of the question. The Nobel archives, at the Nobel Prize-awarding institutions, that among other things contain the nominations connected to the prizes, are held closed. But 50 years after a particular prize had been awarded, the archives concerning the nominees are released. Therefore, in 2008 it was possible to see whether Rosalind Franklin ever was a nominee for the Nobel Prize concerning the DNA helix. The answer is that no one ever nominated her - neither for the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine nor in Chemistry.

The DNA-helix

The sugar-phosphate backbone is on the outside and the four different bases are on the inside of the DNA molecule.

The two strands of the double helix are anti-parallel, which means that they run in opposite directions.

The sugar-phosphate backbone is on the outside of the helix, and the bases are on the inside. The backbone can be thought of as the sides of a ladder, whereas the bases in the middle form the rungs of the ladder.

Each rung is composed of two base pairs. Either an adenine-thymine pair that form a two-hydrogen bond together, or a cytosine-guanine pair that form a three-hydrogen bond. The base pairing is thus restricted.

This restriction is essential when the DNA is being copied: the DNA-helix is first "unzipped" in two long stretches of sugar-phosphate backbone with a line of free bases sticking up from it, like the teeth of a comb. Each half will then be the template for a new, complementary strand. Biological machines inside the cell put the corresponding free bases onto the split molecule and also "proof-read" the result to find and correct any mistakes. After the doubling, this gives rise to two exact copies of the original DNA molecule.

The coding regions in the DNA strand, the genes, make up only a fraction of the total amount of DNA. The stretches that flank the coding regions are called introns, and consist of non-coding DNA. Introns were looked upon as junk in the early days. Today, biologists and geneticists believe that this non-coding DNA may be essential in order to expose the coding regions and to regulate how the genes are expressed.


Gregory DeVictor (author) from Pittsburgh, PA on November 14, 2019:

Ashly, thank you for the comment. It’s always interesting to find out what happened in a certain year.

Ashly Christen from Illinois on November 13, 2019:

1987 the year of my birth So a good year! I love that you collectes all these great things in one place. I will be sharing with my feloow 87 babies!

Gregory DeVictor (author) from Pittsburgh, PA on November 12, 2019:

Kari, thank you for your comment. I’m glad that you enjoyed the article. One event that I distinctly remember from 1987 was Black Monday. I remember exactly where I was and what I was doing. What an unforgettable day that Monday was!

Kari Poulsen from Ohio on November 12, 2019:

I enjoyed this greatly! I was in my mid 20&aposs in 1987 and I remember so many of these things. Great article, it made me smile several times.

Watch the video: Castoriadis @ Paraskinio Παρασκήνιο 1984