Hello CWBA members! I am honored to take the lead for the CWBA Book Club. My goal is to select books that challenge our thinking and aid in our shared desire to grow as humans and attorneys. Our non-fiction book selections will be posted here. To facilitate discussion, I may post questions about our selection or supplemental reference materials in the book club forum. One other way to engage will be during our bi-monthly zoom hosted by the CWBA. If you are not comfortable participating online, feel free to reach out to me offline to chat more about the selection. I hope you find value in the book club and I look forward to your feedback.
Best, Amy Petri Beard
"My Own Words" by Ruth Bader Ginsburg
April 8, 2021
"My Own Words" “showcases Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s astonishing intellectual range” (The New Republic). In this collection, Justice Ginsburg discusses gender equality, the workings of the Supreme Court, being Jewish, law and lawyers in opera, and the value of looking beyond U.S. shores when interpreting the U.S. Constitution. Throughout her life, Justice Ginsburg has been (and continues to be) a prolific writer and public speaker. This book’s sampling is selected by Justice Ginsburg and her authorized biographers Mary Hartnett and Wendy W. Williams, who introduce each chapter and provide biographical context and quotes gleaned from hundreds of interviews they have conducted.
Our Next Book:
"The Making of Asian America: A History" by Erika Lee
The Making of Asian America shows how generations of Asian immigrants and their American-born descendants have made and remade Asian American life, from sailors who came on the first trans-Pacific ships in the 1500 to the Japanese Americans incarcerated during World War II. Over the past fifty years, a new Asian America has emerged out of community activism and the arrival of new immigrants and refugees. No longer a “despised minority,” Asian Americans are now held up as America’s “model minorities” in ways that reveal the complicated role that race still plays in the United States.
"Appealing for Justice: One Lawyer, Four Decades and the Landmark Gay Rights Case: Romer v. Evans" by Susan Berry Casey
Jean Eberhart Dubofsky came of age when trouble was around every corner, fueled by one grave injustice or another. Appealing For Justice is the story of how this shy, unknown, and unheralded woman found her place at the table again and again, then led the way, broke down barriers and helped shape the direction and flow of history. At almost every step, Jean Dubofsky’s story mirrors, reflects, or reveals the depth of the injustice, discrimination, and inequality that lay hidden just beneath the surface of the country we thought ourselves to be.
Our Last Book:
"The New Jim Crow" by Michelle Alexander
February 11, 2021
Seldom does a book have the impact of Michelle Alexander’s "The New Jim Crow." Since it was first published in 2010, it has been cited in judicial decisions and has been adopted in campus-wide and community wide reads; it helped inspire the creation of the Marshall Project and the new $100 million Art for Justice Fund; it has been the winner of numerous prizes, including the prestigious NAACP Image Award; and it has spent nearly 250 weeks on The New York Times bestseller list.
Most important of all, it has spawned a whole generation of criminal justice reform activists and organizations motivated by Michelle Alexander’s unforgettable argument that “we have not ended racial caste in America; we have merely redesigned it.” As the Birmingham News proclaimed, it is “undoubtedly the most important book published in this century about the U.S.”