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Book Review: Ruth Bader Ginsburg, My Own Words

Ruth Bader Ginsburg, My Own Words, with Mary Hartnett and Wendy W. Williams

As with many reviewers in Amazon, I bought Justice Ginsburg’s My Own Words thinking I was getting a biography. Instead, I received a treasure of Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s thoughts about the law, how it works, should work and especially about the reasons why and how the Supreme Court works to keep our Constitution and our Bill of Rights intact and strong during changing times.

The book includes her speeches, legal briefs and law review articles. Some speeches were given on more than one occasion. The legal briefs had many citations. All of this extranea was ably edited, by her law colleagues and long-time friends, Mary Hartnett and Wendy W. Williams.

The citations and articles can be seen on the website,

Justice Ginsburg’s stories about working with other justices are invaluable views into how people who come from very different backgrounds can build on the ideas they share and create friendship, support, and the ability to hear each other clearly, despite deep divides in interpretation of the law.

Her tribute for Chief Justice Rehnquist gives us all a view into how one justice can create an atmosphere of collegiality among such disparate legal minds. Her tributes to Justice Scalia and to the women of the court are gold mines of information on how people can work together.

Our country needs to see this collegiality more and more. We need to get beyond the hatreds and fears that divide us, learn to listen to each other and understand our neighbors. The Supreme Court has worked very hard at this, and Ruth Bader Ginsburg shows us how it can be done.

Plus, there are all those discussions of the history of court and its work in balancing the other two major parts of our government.

What a treasure trove of historical and personal relationship information this book is! I highly recommend it to any who want to learn from Justice Ginsburg’s experiences.

Review by Rae Richen. Read the original book review and more on Rae's blog: Book Reviews for Your Entertainment.

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