Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Ruth Bader Ginsburg
Ginsburg was born Joan Ruth Bader in Brooklyn, New York, the second daughter of Nathan and Celia Bader. Ginsburg's older sister died when she was very young; the neighborhood where she grew up was made up of working-class immigrants, most of them Jewish, Italian, and Irish.
Ginsburg's mother called her "Kiki" and took an active role in Ruth's education, taking her to the library often and applying for scholarships that would allow her to attend college. Celia struggled with cancer throughout Ruth's high school years and died the day before graduation, forcing Ginsburg to withdraw from giving the salutatorian speech she had planned for months. In school, classmates recalled Ginsburg as highly popular and competitive; she joined the twirling squad in high school.
Women's rights advocate
She married Martin D. Ginsburg, a professor of law at Georgetown University Law Center, in 1954, and has a daughter, Jane, and a son, James. She received her B.A. from Cornell University in 1954, attended Harvard Law School, and received her LL.B. from Columbia Law School. She served as a law clerk to the Honorable Edmund L. Palmieri , Judge of the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York, from 1959-1961. From 1961-1963, she was a research associate and then associate director of the Columbia Law School Project on International Procedure. She was a Professor of Law at Rutgers University School of Law from 1963-1972, and Columbia Law School from 1972-1980, and a fellow at the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences in Stanford University, California from 1977-1978.
In 1971, Ginsburg was instrumental in launching the Women's Rights Project of the American Civil Liberties Union, and served as the ACLU's General Counsel from 1973-1980, and on the National Board of Directors from 1974-1980. In this position, Ginsburg successfully argued several women's rights cases before the Supreme Court, including 1973's Frontiero v. Richardson.
She was appointed a Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit by President Carter in 1980. President Clinton nominated her as an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court, and she took her seat August 10, 1993.
During her service on both the Court of Appeals and the Supreme Court, Ginsburg has compiled a record most legal experts characterize as moderate, though she has aligned with the liberal bloc of the Rehnquist Court. Ginsburg has urged a moderate approach to adjudication, writing that "Measured motions seem to me right, in the main, for consitutional as well as common law adjudication. Doctrinal limbs too swiftly shaped, experience teaches, may prove unstable." Ginsburg has urged that the Supreme Court not wholly displace the legislative branches, but rather allow for dialogue with elected branches. Though Ginsburg has consistently voted to uphold a woman's right of abortion, she has criticized the court's ruling in Roe v. Wade as being decided on unnecessarily broad grounds and halting legislative reforms.
Some notable cases in which Ginsburg wrote an opinion:
The contents of this article is licensed from www.wikipedia.org under the GNU Free Documentation License. Click here to see the transparent copy and copyright details