Remembering RBG and honoring the legacy of an icon
September 20, 2020
This weekend, during the High Holiday of Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year, we said goodbye to American Jewish icon, U.S. Supreme Court Associate Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, after she lost her Herculean battle with cancer.

Justice Ginsburg often noted how she has been influenced by the Jewish principle tikkun olam, repairing the world, which she defined as "the obligation to improve the world carefully and steadily, to do one's part to make our communities, nation, and universe more humane and more just." We remain inspired by RBG as an exemplar of justice, civil discourse, and perseverance. We remember her for her embodiment of the Jewish value of tzedek -- justice -- and for always fighting tirelessly to ensure that "We the people" included everyone. The biblical phrase Tzedek, tzedek tirdof (Justice, justice you shall pursue) featured on the wall in her Chambers as a constant reminder of this goal.

As we grapple with this loss, we turn to the proud and exuberant moments we were so honored to share with Justice Ginsburg, most recently this past December when she visited in person to receive the Only in America Award and be inducted into our Only in America/Hall of Fame Gallery. In addition to that special evening, and the special exhibition on her life and work we were thrilled to host at that time, we are also so proud of the many ways her story is told throughout our Core Exhibition, from her stint as summer camp rabbi to serving as the first Jewish woman on our nation's highest court.

As many of you seek to celebrate and honor her legacy, we hope that you will find the resources in this email helpful.

Wishing you peace, happiness, and health in the New Year,
Your Friends at NMAJH
Ruth Bader Ginsburg: NMAJH Statement
“Fight for the things you care about, but do it in a way that will lead others to join you.”Ruth Bader Ginsburg

We mourn the loss of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, a pioneer and relentless advocate for gender equality and civil rights, who died Friday night, September 18, 2020, on the Jewish High Holiday, Rosh Hashanah — the Jewish New Year. During this time of reflection, our thoughts are with the family of Justice Ginsburg and with all who have been impacted by her strength, wisdom, and grace.

Remembering Ruth Bader Ginsburg: Obituaries

Written by NPR's Political Affairs Correspondent, Nina Totenberg, one of RBG's oldest and dearest friends, who served as the emcee of our December event honoring Justice Ginsburg.

Image: Rebecca Gibian/AP

Written for New York Magazine by Irin Carmon, co-author of Notorious RBG: The Life and Times of Ruth Bader Ginsburg, on which the exhibition of the same name is based.

Image: Erik Madigan Heck/Trunk Archive
Ruth Bader Ginsburg and NMAJH: Videos

We were honored to present Justice Ginsburg with the Only in America Award in-person on December 19, 2019. This 17-minute video excerpted from the full program includes the award presentation and Justice Ginsburg's remarks from that very special evening.

Image: Programs on chairs prior to the event/Jessi Melcer

The full event includes remarks from some of Justice Ginsburg's closest friends and deepest admirers, and performances by one of her favorite sopranos from the Washington Opera.

Image: RBG accepting the Only in America Award at NMAJH/Jessi Melcer

Hear firsthand from the creative forces that took Notorious RBG from a Tumblr site, to a New York Times bestselling book, to a powerhouse museum exhibition that made its east coast-debut in Philadelphia last fall, Irin Carmon and Shana Knizhnik.

This event was held at the Museum on December 15, 2019.
Photo Credit: Larry Sandez, Notorious RBG in Song at the Skirball Cultural Center, Los Angeles, January 2019

This event was held at NMAJH on December 12, 2019.

Soprano-composer Patrice Michaels, the daughter-in-law of Justice Ginsburg, created Notorious RBG in Song, a dramatic concert saluting the life and work Justice Ginsburg in celebration of her 25 years on the United States Supreme Court.

Ms. Michaels was joined during the Q&A by Grammy-nominated producer and founder of Cedille Records, Chicago’s Classical Recording NFP, James Ginsburg, son of Justice Ginsburg.

Check out Nina Totenberg's audio feature about Notorious RBG in Song on NPR here.
Ruth Bader Ginsburg: Additional Resources

Learn more about the exhibition, Notorious RBG: The Life and Times of Ruth Bader Ginsburg, which was on-view at the Museum from October 4, 2019 through January 12, 2020.

Image: Installation view of Notorious RBG at NMAJH/Jessi Melcer

This 45-minute MSNBC special segment first aired Friday night, September 18, 2020, and was filmed in part at our Museum the evening of Justice Ginsburg's induction ceremony in December 2019. It includes a clip of her visiting "her" special exhibition for the first time, which she had not had the chance to visit previously when it debuted in Los Angeles.

The Oscar-nominated documentary, simply titled "RBG," is available online. We were thrilled to welcome the film's Executive Producer, CNN's Amy Entelis, for a screening and talkback in October 2019. You can watch an excerpt from that conversation here.

Per Newsweek, "RBG is currently available to stream on Hulu. Many who have public library cards, along with some college students, can also stream the documentary for free using Hoopla and Kanopy, which offer content to U.S. libraries and universities. The film can also be rented or purchased from multiple sources, including rentals from Redbox for $1.99, Amazon Prime Video for $2.49, YouTube for $2.99 or iTunes for $3.99."

Left: Amy Entelis, executive vice president for talent and content development for CNN Worldwide, and CNN's Senior Director of Development, Jon Adler at NMAJH 10/7/19.
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