I happen to live with a nonprofit immigration lawyer, and let me tell you, the number of times the name “Ruth Bader Ginsburg” is said and praised in our household is quite high. So we didn’t hesitate to see the movie On the Basis of Sex (starring Felicity Jones) when it hit theaters last year. So, from my partner’s bookshelf to yours, here are the top books you should read for the notorious RBG fan in your life.
A sample of writings and speeches from the queen of the Supreme Court herself. With each piece personally selected by Justice Ginsburg and her authorized biographers Mary Hartnett and Wendy W. Williams, this collection is filled with RBG’s words on a wide range of topics, from gender equality to the workways of the Supreme Court to law and lawyers in the opera. If you really want to know more about RBG, this is the place to start.
Based off interviews with Justice Ginsburg, her husband, her children, her friends, and her associates, this book is the most comprehensive account of the justice’s life up to the present (because there’s no doubt that RBG has many more years to keep dissenting). The book follows RBG’s journey from Cornell University to Harvard and Columbia Law School (where she was first in her class) to her career as a law professor to the sex-discrimination case that is the center of On the Basis of Sex, and beyond.
For the young feminist in your life, this is the first picture book about Ruth Bader Ginsburg. It begins with Ruth learning the power of dissenting as a young Jewish girl during World War II. As she grew up, Ruth continued standing up for herself and others, pushing the status quo for girls and women and ultimately becoming the second woman ever on the Supreme Court. It’s a book about the power of speaking up and disagreeing.
You knew you needed an RBG coffee-table book, didn’t you? Featuring a foreword from Mimi Leder, the director of On the Basis of Sex, this book contains 130 photographs, inspiring quotes, and highlights from notable speeches and judicial opinions. A must-have for any RBG fan.
I’m not sure any other Supreme Court justice has ever reached the level of fame achieved by Ruth Bader Ginsburg. In recent years, she’s gained notoriety across the internet, becoming a cultural icon, and this all began with a Tumblr blog entitled Notorious R.B.G: Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, in All Her Glory. This book was inspired by that blog, but it goes far beyond Tumblr, giving glimpses into various parts of RBG’s life, from her famous speeches to her workout routine.
Speaking of RBG’s workout, have you recently wondered how an 85-year-old woman can break three ribs and be back on the bench less than a month later? There’s no doubt Justice Ginsburg is a badass, and this can be proven with a look at her workout routine. THE RBG WORKOUT, written by RBG’s personal trainer, details Justice Ginsburg’s twice-weekly workout. Now you can stay in shape like RBG from the comfort of your own home.
Ruth Bader Ginsburg is the second woman ever to serve on the United States Supreme Court. The first? Justice Sandra Day O’Connor. SISTERS IN LAW is a dual biography about how these two incredible women fought for recognition in a male-dominated profession, ultimately reshaping the Constitution and America to help make it a more equal place for women.
SISTERS IN LAW portrays the fascinating relationship between Sandra Day O’Connor and Ruth Bader Ginsburg, the first and second women to serve as Supreme Court justices. Linda Hirshman’s dual biography describes how these trailblazers fought for their own recognition in a male-dominated profession—battles that would ultimately benefit every American woman.
If you’re a feminist looking for inspiration, this is the book for you. You may not have time to read Justice Ginsburg’s full speeches, essays, or dissents. That’s okay. YOU CAN’T SPELL TRUTH WITHOUT RUTH contains some of RBG’s best quotes and insights. It’s exactly what you need when you’re feeling down in our patriarchal society.