Seán MacBride


Seán Mac Bride was born on January 26, 1904 in Paris. He took an active part in the movement for Irish independence and suffered imprisonment on several occasions.

1947-1958 Member of Dail Eireann (Irish Parliament).
1948-1951 Minister for External Affairs for Ireland in Inter-Party Government. In 1954 was offered but declined, Ministerial Office in Irish Government.
1948-1951 Vice-President of the Organization for European Economic Cooperation (OEEC).
1950 President, Committee of Ministers of Council of Europe.
1963-1971 Secretary-General, International Commission of Jurists.
1966 Consultant to the Pontifical Commission on Justice and Peace.
1961-1975 Chairman Amnesty International Executive.
1968-1974 Chairman of the Executive International Peace Bureau 1968-1974 Chairman, 1975-85 President.
1968-1974 Chairman Special Committee of International Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) on Human Rights (Geneva).
1973 Vice-Chairman, Congress of World Peace Forces (Moscow, October 1973).
1973 Vice-President, World Federation of United Nations Associations.
1973-1977 Elected by the General Assembly of the United Nations to the post of United Nations Commissioner for Namibia with rank of Assistant Secretary-General of the United Nations.
1977-1980 Chairman, Commission on International Communication for UNESCO.
1982 Chairman of the International Commission looking into possible violations of international law by Israel after the invasion of Lebanon.


American Medal of Justice (1975).

  Lenin Peace Prize (1977).


UNESCO Silver Medal (1980).

  Many honorary degrees from universities.


Selected Bibliography

By Mac Bride*

“Anglo-Irish Relationships: The Overwhelming Majority of people Want a United Ireland”. Vital Speeches 48 (1 November 1981): 40-44.

The Right to Refuse to Kill: A New Guide to Conscientious Objection and Service Refusal. Geneva: International Peace Bureau, 1971.

Other Sources

Coogan, Timothy Patrick. The I.R.A. New York: Praeger, 1970. (Historical account by a leading Irish journalist.)

MacBride, Maud Gonne. A Servant of the Queen. Dublin: Golden & Eagle, 1950. (Autobiography of Seán MacBride’s mother.)

“MacBride, Seán”. In CB, 1949.

Seán MacBride of Ireland is Dead at 83″. New York Times, 16 January 1988.

Weil, Gordon L. The European Convention on Human Rights: Background, Development and Prospects. Leyden: Sijthoff, 1962. (Well researched.)

*Also listed as MacBride.

From Nobel Lectures, Peace 1971-1980, Editor-in-Charge Tore Frängsmyr, Editor Irwin Abrams, World Scientific Publishing Co., Singapore, 1997

This autobiography/biography was written at the time of the award and first published in the book series Les Prix Nobel. It was later edited and republished in Nobel Lectures. To cite this document, always state the source as shown above.

Seán Mac Bride died on 15 January 1988.

Copyright © The Nobel Foundation 1974

To cite this section
MLA style: Seán MacBride – Biographical. Nobel Prize Outreach AB 2024. Thu. 29 Feb 2024. <>

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