Notorious RBG: The Life and Times of Ruth Bader Ginsburg

by Irin Carmon

Other authorsShana Knizhnik (Author.)
Book, 2015

Barcode

123461115

Call number

B DIA GIN

Publication

New York, NY DEY ST., an Imprint of William Morrow Publishers, 2015

Description

A visually rich, intimate, unprecedented look at the Justice and how she changed the world. From Ginsburg's refusal to let the slammed doors of sexism stop her to her innovative legal work, from her before-its-time feminist marriage to her perch on the nation's highest court, with the fierce dissents to match, get to know RBG as never before. As the country struggles with the unfinished business of gender equality and civil rights, Ginsburg stands as a testament to how far people can come with a little chutzpah.

User reviews

LibraryThing member clamairy
What's not to love about RGB? This woman is a national treasure. This book was a relatively quick yet enlightening read. I would have enjoyed more anecdotes and fewer quotes from her SCOTUS dissenting opinions, though.
Long live RGB!
LibraryThing member breic
This is a pretty lightweight biography. It's mostly fan worship; you'll learn all about RBG's relationship with her husband Marty (more than I needed to know), and about her workout routine—but very little about the legal cases she argued or decided, nor get anything deeper, e.g., about her
Show More
refusal to retire. You'd probably learn more from her Wikipedia page. (Checking it now, this is sadly true.) Still, it is short and fun, and liberals need some fan worship to get them through.
Show Less
LibraryThing member Itzey
"You can't spell Truth with Ruth".

During the February, 2016 memorial coverage of Justice Antonin Scalia, I found myself drawn to a photograph taken in India in 1994 of Justice Scalia and Justice Ginsburg together lumbering along waving from atop an elephant. It stopped me in my tracks as I knew
Show More
they represented the yin and yang of the American Justice System. Was it conceivable that they were friends outside their hallowed chambers? What was my little 5 ft tall Jewish icon of Women's Rights doing hanging around the man that declared that the constitution didn't bar sex discrimination?

That question rattled around in my brain and prompted me to look into her biography. I needed to know more about Ruth as a person, not just a Supreme Court Justice with fancy collars and a fiery pen. There are some great choices available, including books written by Justice Ginsberg herself, but I fell in love with Carmon and Knizhnik's Notorious RBG: The Life and Times of Ruth Bader Ginsberg.

This glossy picture strewn work brings RBG to life in short but thorough stories of her progression from Kiki, the baton twirling teen, deeply in love with the adventurous and independent Nancy Drew books to present day, a strong and resilient Supreme Court Justice not afraid to stand up and fight for human rights.

RBG, born in 1933, began her steady growth toward gender independence fighting as she states, with three strikes against her, "[I was] a woman, a mother and a Jew." But as she fought for her own survival and career, she wasn't as yet a strong advocate for feminism. As a college professor, Ruth, inspired by student activism, joined a national movement that has steadily over tme moved toward not just women's rights but equal rights for all regardless of gender, race, or social status.

Ruth began to fight her way into a "man's world" pulling all women along with her. She knew the importance of staying focused and educated on issues. She formed her own style. Pick your battles. Fight hard but not loudly or brash. Permanent change must be achieved through baby steps, carefully. When you have something to say, say it with a steady hand and carefully chosen words. Your voice will be heard over the din.

"Anger, resentment, indulgence in recriminations waste time and sap energy." (Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg)

As much as I was fascinated by all the legal briefs and dissents that Ruth presented, the most important message I got from the book is best said by the two people perched on top of that elephant so many years ago:

“Call us the odd couple," Scalia said. "She likes opera, and she's a very nice person. What's not to like — Except her views on the law."

[Likewise, Ginsburg could acknowledge her differences with her good friend Nino while still admiring his peppery prose.] "I disagreed with most of what he said, but I loved the way he said it,"
(George Washington University event, 2015)

These two people, at odds in their legal lives, can also see the human side of each other and share the richness of friendship and love. In our current political climate, Antonin Scalia and Ruth Bader Ginsburg have shown the importance of civility, respect and friendship.

I am going to jump in here with a diversion from the book and a personal comment..In my blog, I posted a copy of a tweet from President-elect Donald Trump that reads:

"Justice Ginsburg of the U. S. Supreme Court has embarrassed all by making very dumb political statements about me. Her mind is shot- resign!"

As we head into a new world in America, my best guess is that Justice Ginsburg will not be deterred by tweets or taunts. She will stand with her principles and continue to represent all of us to the best of her ability.

Highly recommend reading.
Show Less
LibraryThing member gbelik
A short and informative biography which focuses on personal detail and general legal and political principles. A wonderful woman and jurist. Lets hope she can hold on for a while longer.
LibraryThing member TGPistole
an enjoyable read. I had not realized what an socially active person she was prior to her appointment to the Supreme Court.
LibraryThing member lilibrarian
Biography of supreme court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg
LibraryThing member BenjaminHahn
It is a bit hard to describe what this book is exactly. I learned a lot about Ruth Bader Ginsberg by reading Notorious RBG but it doesn't fit nicely into a specific category library genre. Is it a biography? Not really. Is it a memoir? No. Is it a hagiography? Pretty much, but with kitsch. Should
Show More
we expect to see more titles like this as more millennials start writing books? Absolutely.
Seriously though, I did get a quick fly-by account of RBG's rise to the top of the judicial world with lots of interesting little snippets of trivia. There is probably nothing untrue about RBG in this book. The authors are clearly smitten with RBG and her specific outlook on justice. This is not necessarily a bad thing, but its very clear by the first chapter that you are not going to hear anything critical of the justice throughout the rest of the book. The book is also a bit self-congratulatory in that it sites it's authors tumblr page as being the source of RBG's hip social status in today's social media mindset.
There are lots of visual aids and unique twists to presenting information in the book. Timelines, annotated (and truncated) dissent summaries, and just downright bizarre appendixes. One features a best-of photo gallery of women (and animals) dressed up like Justice Ginsberg. These are obviously from the tumblr account created by the authors prior to the publishing of this book. The fonts are large, as are the margins. There is a two page spread of Marty Ginsberg's favorite recipe (milk braised pork). I can see how this might appeal to the fan girl base but I wouldn't site the book in a paper.
Show Less
LibraryThing member EllsbethB
This was a delightful love letter to Justice Ginsburg. It is a quick read with a variety of stories from RBG's life. While it has a clear bias, I think it is worth the read for anyone who is interested in stories of strong women.
LibraryThing member TooBusyReading
This biography of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg is a delight to read. The woman is quite remarkable, and has an incredibly strong spirit and work ethic. The author does let her admiration show through the writing, but that is not a negative for me.

RBG has stood up for what she believes
Show More
in, even when she tilts at windmills. She is a pioneer in women's, and therefore human, rights. While this could have been dry to read about, it was not. I appreciated learning about her relationship with her husband, who sounds like he was a delightful and supportive person, as well as being an important attorney in his own right. I would have liked to have read a bit more about RBG's relationship with her children.

This book shows us this justice as a real person, not just a voice on the court. I listened to an audio version that was accompanied by an enhanced e-book, and it was read quite nicely, but I think I would have preferred to read this book rather than listen to it. There were references to the enhanced e-book which would have been easy to use in a print or e-ink book but were a bit clumsy in audio & e-book. Still, this is an excellent biography, well worth reading or hearing.
Show Less
LibraryThing member rgruberhighschool
RGG: The history of the evolution of these Supreme Court decisions is fascinating. And the biography of Ruth Bader Ginsburg humanizes the process. Reading Interest: YA-Adult
LibraryThing member Narshkite
So good. I am an RBG fan girl and have been since she sat on the DC circuit, but i learned a few new things, and came to adore her even more.
LibraryThing member Kaethe
Notorious RBG: The Life and Times of Ruth Bader Ginsburg - Shana Knizhnik, Irin Carmon No doubt there are people who will disagree with me on this, but I quite like the books I've seen that started as blogs or Tumblrs or similar. The editor has a fine opportunity to see what the audience is, and a
Show More
good idea of what a finished product would contain. And all that I have read so far managed to take what was a good idea and make it richer, deeper, more fleshed out.
 
As, for example, here. Because Bader Ginsberg has been awesome all her life. It was fascinating to see the trajectory of her career, and the progression of legal challenges to laws restricting women's rights. This isn't a traditional biography, but it certainly manages to hit a lot of high spots. And it also gives a wonderful insight into the ACLU and the directed plan to increase civil rights. I'd never thought about it before, but now that I know I love the idea of a career based on observing and fighting injustice. She has style, she has flair (those marvelous collars), and she has a keen sense of justice. The Notorious RBG was an entertaining and uplifting book. Every expansion in human rights is treated as something the privileged class just decided one day that it had to go. History classes (back when I took them) rarely or never portrayed the hard work, the organization, the PR, the constant ongoing struggle to achieve what has been denied. So seeing that presented in a zippy way with fan art, that is just a fabulous hook. I hope every young woman reads this and considers what she wants to fight for, and how, as well as how to accessorize her judge's robes. (oh, yeah, it feels a little Legally Blonde in a good way)
 
Not only was there a clamor at the house to read this first, but there was widespread interest among the librarians and patrons who saw the book. I can't fault any thing that gets people thinking about how to make the world better.
 
Library copy
 
 
Show Less
LibraryThing member nospi
Wonderful audible book about the life and work of Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

The book is truly superb about the history and work of Ruth Bader Ginsburg. I wish every young women would read it to understand the history that women have lived through and created in America.
LibraryThing member cacky
Truthfully, because of the subject of the book, it wouldn't matter how well or how poorly written it was written.
LibraryThing member cbrwn92
My love for RBG has never been greater.
LibraryThing member bookworm12
I don't care what your political beliefs are, RBG's life is incredible. She's an inspiration to women everywhere. The diminutive Supreme Court justice did not have an easy path to success. I loved learning more about her as a lawyer, wife, opera-lover, mother, and judge.
LibraryThing member abycats
As a lawyer, have read many biographies of lawyers and this is the finest yet. I have always admired her, but now have even more grounds for doing so. Fine blend of enough personal details with not only descriptions, but also annotated, excerpts from her important briefs and opinions. Pictures are
Show More
sprinkled throughout where I want them, and the writing style is concise, informative, but inclusive. The research seems thorough and the authors got feedback from RBG, her family, and associates. I find it hard to imagine a better biography, period.
Show Less
LibraryThing member Kaethe
No doubt there are people who will disagree with me on this, but I quite like the books I've seen that started as blogs or Tumblrs or similar. The editor has a fine opportunity to see what the audience is, and a good idea of what a finished product would contain. And all that I have read so far
Show More
managed to take what was a good idea and make it richer, deeper, more fleshed out.


As, for example, here. Because Bader Ginsberg has been awesome all her life. It was fascinating to see the trajectory of her career, and the progression of legal challenges to laws restricting women's rights. This isn't a traditional biography, but it certainly manages to hit a lot of high spots. And it also gives a wonderful insight into the ACLU and the directed plan to increase civil rights. I'd never thought about it before, but now that I know I love the idea of a career based on observing and fighting injustice. She has style, she has flair (those marvelous collars), and she has a keen sense of justice. The Notorious RBG was an entertaining and uplifting book. Every expansion in human rights is treated as something the privileged class just decided one day that it had to go. History classes (back when I took them) rarely or never portrayed the hard work, the organization, the PR, the constant ongoing struggle to achieve what has been denied. So seeing that presented in a zippy way with fan art, that is just a fabulous hook. I hope every young woman reads this and considers what she wants to fight for, and how, as well as how to accessorize her judge's robes. (oh, yeah, it feels a little Legally Blonde in a good way)


Not only was there a clamor at the house to read this first, but there was widespread interest among the librarians and patrons who saw the book. I can't fault any thing that gets people thinking about how to make the world better.


Library copy
Show Less
LibraryThing member Citizenjoyce
Excellent. Maybe not quite as compelling as Sisters in Law: How Sandra Day O'Connor and Ruth Bader Ginsburg Went to the Supreme Court and Changed the World by Linda Hirshman but still it gives you a good look at RBG and why she has to live forever (or at least 10 more years - to be safe)
LibraryThing member detailmuse
I’ve wanted to know more about RBG and this book’s title (and the Notorious B.I.G. crown on the cover) was too fun to resist. I’d loved her admission after a State of the Union where she dozed off (“I was not 100% sober”), and I’d been surprised she had concerns about Roe v. Wade (seems
Show More
she felt the Court ruled too soon; she’d prefer support to build within the states). It’s a very straightforward, light biography of her family life and career (including Court friendships), with a focus on her feminism (for equal rights, not world dominion). Fun on audio, but there is enhanced content (illustrations) that may make the printed copy even better.
Show Less
LibraryThing member lissabeth21
Great overview biography.
LibraryThing member octafoil40
I am a male attorney who had never given much thought to the history of women attorneys.There were no women in my law school class. I then served three years in the army in Vietnam and in Washington D. C. as Defence Appellate Attorney. Thereafter I returned to civilian law
practice to find women
Show More
attorneys in all law firms and courtrooms.

This 227 page book was a joy to read and is an excellent and entertaining short history of not only the life of Justice Ginsburg but of the legal cases she brought to the U.S. Supreme Court as the hero of the Women's Rights Project. The book is a fast read and full of pictures and entertaining marginal notations that are simply captivating. I highly
recommend this book.
Show Less
LibraryThing member ewyatt
A well-designed book that traces the life of rbg, from her childhood as Kiki Bader to the leader of the liberal wing of the Supreme Court. The book documents much of her early work on equality cases, traces her own challenges due to sexism and expectation of women's roles, delves into her 50+ year
Show More
partnership with Marty Ginsburg, and touches on the cultural phenomenon that #notorious rgb has become. There are annotations of some of the decisions she has written for the Supreme Court and insight into the inner workings of the court.
I learned a lot while reading the book.
Show Less
LibraryThing member CarrieWuj
This book has been on my radar for awhile and while it was a good audio version, I will need to re-visit the paper copy -- there were so many dates and timelines that sink in better when seen. I finally knocked this off my TBR list so I could go see the recent movie guilt-free. What an amazing
Show More
woman! Please please please let her hang on 2 more years! Her dedication to justice for all is inspiring as are her achievements as a woman of her era in breaking through various barriers and levels of discrimination. She is a wonderful role model for the next generation -- young men and women. Here is a story of hard work, intelligence, empathy, open-mindedness and mutual love and support with her husband Marty. Her advice to "Think about what you want then do the work" is timeless and relevant and speaks volumes about her work ethic and vision. Her professional accomplishments are in a category all their own, but what comes through most in the bio is her supreme integrity and her untouchable awesomeness as a human being.
Show Less
LibraryThing member KatherineGregg
I didn't know much about RBG other than she was the second woman to be appointed to the Supreme Court. The book is playful but absolutely serious about telling RBG's story. Now in her 80s, RBG was one of a handful of female law students at Harvard back in the 1950s. After time spent teaching law at
Show More
Rutgers (no law firm would hire her after law school) and working for the ACLU (where she co-founded the Women's Rights Project), she was nominated by President Carter to the US Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit before being nominated by President Clinton to the Supreme Court. Throughout her career (she's still on the bench!) she fought for equality, not only for women, but for everyone. A mother to two children whom she raised with a husband she loved dearly, RBG was somehow able (mainly because she can live on very little sleep) to find time for work and family. You also learn about her impressive exercise regime which includes 20 push up a day!
Show Less

Original publication date

2015-10-17

ISBN

0062415837

Local notes

Diaspora Jewry
Page: 0.6261 seconds