Ruth Bader Ginsburg

a life

Jane Sherron De Hart author


Publisher:Scribe Publications

Published:12th Nov '20


Available to order, but very limited on stock - if we have issues obtaining a copy, we will let you know.

Ruth Bader Ginsburg cover

The definitive account of an icon who shaped gender equality for all women.

In this comprehensive, revelatory biography — fifteen years of interviews and research in the making — historian Jane Sherron De Hart explores the central experiences that crucially shaped Ginsburg’s passion for justice, her advocacy for gender equality, and her meticulous jurisprudence. At the heart of her story and abiding beliefs was her Jewish background, specifically the concept of tikkun olam, the Hebrew injunction to ‘repair the world’, with its profound meaning for a young girl who grew up during the Holocaust and World War II.

Ruth’s journey began with her mother, who died tragically young but  whose intellect inspired her daughter’s feminism. It stretches from Ruth’s days as a baton twirler at Brooklyn’s James Madison High School to Cornell University to Harvard and Columbia Law Schools; to becoming one of the first female law professors in the country and having to fight for equal pay and hide her second pregnancy to avoid losing her job; to becoming the director of the ACLU’s Women’s Rights Project and arguing momentous anti-sex-discrimination cases before the US Supreme Court.

All this, even before being nominated in 1993 to become the second woman on the Court, where her crucial decisions and dissents are still making history. Intimately, personably told, this biography offers unprecedented insight into a pioneering life and legal career whose profound impact will reverberate deep into the twenty-first century and bey

‘Readable and rewarding … Ginsburg is a true-blue legal icon.’

-- Michelle Olsen * NPR *

‘Engaging and admiring.’

* The Wall Street Journal *

‘An accomplished account of Ginsburg’s life that also probes the fissures of feminism as it developed over the past 70 years … offers a humane and definitive portrait of Ginsburg’s life and times, full of context and colour.’

-- Frieda Klotz * Sunday Independent *

‘[A]n excellent biography based on archives and interviews with colleagues and friends: In its comprehensiveness, range and attention to detail, this is a vivid account of a remarkable life ... De Hart’s chapters on the landmark cases Ginsburg argued, which were the original core of her book project, are detailed and accessible.’

-- Jeffrey Rosen * The Washington Post *

‘In a revealing new biography, 15 years in the making, Jane Sherron De Hart helps untangle the mystery of the decorous Ginsburg as feminist gladiator.’

-- Dahlia Lithwick * The Atlantic *

‘This hefty book of more than seven hundred pages portrays the history of an outstanding legal expert known and applauded for her advancement of gender equality and civil rights. It is an American story that should be read as an example of what is possible when one has family support, internal grit, moral certainty, and scholarly expertise. Read about Ginsburg’s role in the ACLU, look into case histories, watch her as a college professor, look at the political wrangling, and examine her performance as a judge in the Appeals Courts and as a Supreme Court Justice. This is a wondrous tale, recorded well, that resounds as an American epic.’

-- Aron Row * Seattle Book Review *

‘An in-depth biography of the Supreme Court justice who has become a pop-culture icon.’

* USA Today *

‘De Hart’s thorough biography relates this life story with a nice sense of the sweep of feminist and legal history that is contained within it.’

* Minneapolis Star Tribune *

‘The first comprehensive biography of Ruth Bader Ginsburg … De Hart excels in explaining the majority opinions, and later the dissents, in which she participated with remarkable clarity, illuminating the issues, the competing positions, and the significance of each in language easily grasped by readers with no legal training (for a nonlawyer, De Hart has a remarkable grasp of court jurisprudence) ... A monumental biography of one of the most influential and revered Supreme Court justices of the last century.’ STARRED REVIEW

* Kirkus Reviews *

‘De Hart's great strength is her ability to explain Ginsburg's cases and the legal strategies she employed … An insightful, fascinating, and admiring biography of one of America's most extraordinary jurists.’

* Publishers Weekly *

‘Meticulously researched … Ginsburg’s career is skillfully placed within the context of American social and political history.’

* Library Journal *

‘Passionate and thorough … A major event in scholarship on American law.’

* Washington Monthly *

‘Scholarly, yet accessible … Rewarding and compelling.’

* Pittsburgh Post-Gazette *

‘Magisterial and timely … Written in clear language and grounded in historical context.’

* The Forward *

‘Compelling … De Hart succeeds in showing us that the 107th person to be appointed to the Supreme Court is much more than a pop culture icon.’

* Jewish Journal *

‘A masterful biography that adds depth and insight to Ginsburg's only-in-America life story.’

-- Kenneth Jost * Washington Independent Review of Books *

‘De Hart displays an impressive grasp of each area of Ginsburg's legal influence, from women's rights to voting rights to gay rights to immigrant rights, with a particular focus on striking down laws that discriminated on the basis of gender.’

-- Mary Ann Gwinn * Newsweek *

‘Does a daunting job of restoring Ginsburg’s impressive roots … As Martin Luther King Jr. said, ‘The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.’ De Hart leaves no doubt that, in Justice Ginsburg’s hands, that arc will undoubtedly continue to bend.’

-- Priscilla Kipp * BookPage *

‘A rigorous, comprehensive, deftly written biography.’

* The National Book Review *

‘Couldn't have come at a more opportune time ... This in-depth tome clocks in at more than 500 pages, but promises a first-of-its kind look inside RBG's personal and professional lives ... already at the top of our holiday shopping lists for the formidable women and girls in our lives.’

-- Quinn Keany * Popsugar *

‘De Hart dynamically devotes more than 500 pages to the amazing life of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg … This extensively documented account … is also quite engaging and very easy to read.’ STARRED REVIEW

-- Kathleen McBroom * Booklist *

Praise for Women's America: refocusing the past:

Women's America is exceptional at providing a variety of perspectives, experiences, and knowledge about women's economic, social, cultural, political, and sexual lives throughout a broad expanse of time and geography.’

-- Sandra Slater, College of Charle

ISBN: 9781913348496

Dimensions: 198mm x 129mm x 36mm

Weight: unknown

608 pages