Sisters in Law by Linda Hirshman | LJ Review

starred review starHirshmanHirshman, Linda. Sisters in Law: How Sandra Day O’Connor and Ruth Bader Ginsburg Went to the Supreme Court and Changed the World. Harper: HarperCollins. Sept. 2015. 416p. photos. notes. bibliog. index. ISBN 9780062238467. $28.99; ebk. ISBN 9780062238481. LAW
In addition to its clever title, this book offers an illuminating analysis of the ascent by Sandra Day O’Connor and Ruth Bader Ginsburg to the United States Supreme Court. A lawyer and women’s studies scholar, Hirshman (Victory: The Triumphant Gay Revolution; A Woman’s Guide to Law School) excels in portraying the enormous obstacles encountered by women attempting to enter the legal field. O’Connor and Ginsburg both attended top-tier law schools and graduated at the top of their respective classes. Nonetheless, both struggled to obtain their first professional jobs. Still, the women persisted and succeeded, despite the prevailing male-oriented culture. The two could not have been more different: O’Connor grew up on a ranch in the West, Ginsburg hailed from Brooklyn; O’Connor was a prominent Republican, Ginsburg was a card-carrying Democrat and ACLU attorney who fought to advance the Equal Rights Amendment; O’Connor was a politician, while Ginsburg was a tactician and legal scholar. Nevertheless, both made history in shaping the law as we know it today. VERDICT This superb book unpacks the remarkable achievements of the first two female Supreme Court justices, “sisters in law,” indeed. Perfect for readers relishing Jeffrey Toobin’s The Nine: Inside the Secret World of the Supreme Court. [See Prepub Alert, 3/30/15.]—Lynne Maxwell, West Virginia Univ. Coll. of Law Lib., Morgantown

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