"To make life a little better for people less fortunate than you, that's what I think a meaningful life is. One lives not just for oneself but for one's community."
~Ruth Bader Ginsburg (1933-2020)
Appointed by President Bill Clinton, Ruth Bader Ginsburg served as an Associate Justice on the US Supreme Court from 1993 until September 18, 2020. Recognized as both intelligent and ambitious, Ginsburg often found herself marginalized because of her gender. Tough and tenacious, she persisted and championed the rights of women through her work as a lawyer and judge by exposing the injustices women faced at the hands of the U.S. legal system.
To learn more about the life of Justice Ginsburg, check out this great biographical sketch or one of the following books available at the Doerr Library:
Dissenter On the Bench: Ruth Bader Ginsburg's Life and Work by Victoria Ortiz. 347.73 GIN
A Court Divided: The Rehnquist Court and the Future of Constitutional Law by Mark Tushnet. 347.73 TUS
For more information about the Supreme Court check out Checks and Balances: The Three Branches of the American Government, an eBook available through the Gale Virtual Reference Library.
Ginsburg did not always agree with the majority opinion and took her role as a dissenter seriously. She wrote, "Dissents speak to a future age. It's not simply to say, 'My colleagues are wrong and I would do it this way.' But the greatest dissents do become court opinions and gradually over time their views become the dominant view. So that's the dissenter's hope: that they are writing not for today, but for tomorrow."