FX Excursions

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Notorious RBG: The Life and Times of Ruth Bader Ginsburg

by Angelique Platas

Oct 17, 2019

Ruth Bader Ginsburg teaching at Columbia Law School, 1972. Courtesy of Columbia Law School.

The National Museum of American Jewish History hosts a special exhibition based on a book of the same name: “Notorious RBG: The Life and Times of Ruth Bader Ginsburg.”

Notorious RBG book cover illustration by Adam Johnson. Courtesy of HarperCollins. Photographs: Crown © by Hurst Photo/Shutterstock; Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Collection of the Supreme Court of the United States.

This special exhibit is located on NMAJH’s fifth floor, overlooking the corner of Fifth and Market streets on Philadelphia’s historic Independence Mall. The prominent location is difficult to miss. And with added décor touches of the Notorious RBG’s crooked crown (a nod to rapper Notorious B.I.G.) and knowing glare, you can’t help but want to know more about the lady, the judge, the legend. And I happily obliged.

NMAJH has been on my list for a while, and with the new exhibit opening, there was no time like the present. One word of advice: Opt for a free tour, if available. The guides are experts and genuinely interested in the subject matter. They can tell the story for you in an interesting, engaging way, or you can read through the exhibit on your own. Don’t forget to pick up the stationery headphones as you go to hear Ruth speak during important moments in her career.

Stroll through the life and times of RBG, reading her various notes, quotes and fierce stances on all things equality.

Ruth Bader Ginsburg teaching at Columbia Law School, 1972. Courtesy of Columbia Law School.

Learn about Ruth’s early days, college years, life with Marty, career path, record-breaking dissents and pioneering ways that all brought her to the highest court in the nation. See artifacts from her life mixed in with pop-culture references, including a costume the real RBG wore on stage and one Felicity Jones wore depicting her in the film based on her life, On the Basis of Sex.

If the exhibit teaches you nothing else, you’ll definitely walk away knowing Ginsburg stands for equality for all — no matter politics, race or gender.

There’s a fun, interactive flow to the exhibit, encouraging guests to read, watch video footage and feel present.

Born to be a trailblazer, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg is the first Jewish woman, to serve on the U.S. Supreme Court. Clearly, she’s more than worthy of her own exhibit, which runs through Jan. 12, 2020.

— Angelique Platas, associate editor

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