Ele­na Kagan: A Biography

Meg Greene
  • Review
By – March 30, 2015

This biog­ra­phy is a well-writ­ten, heav­i­ly researched look into the path that Ele­na Kagan took through­out her life to get to the posi­tion of Jus­tice of the Supreme Court of the Unit­ed States. As part of the Green­wood Biog­ra­phy series, this book chron­i­cles her life from her New York child­hood to her days at Prince­ton to her work at Har­vard, and fol­lows her all the way to the Supreme Court. The writ­ing style is extreme­ly infor­ma­tive, how­ev­er it can feel a bit dry at times. There is a large amount of back­ground infor­ma­tion about the neigh­bor­hoods that Ele­na lived in and the schools that she attend­ed. This cre­ates a full, rich con­text for young read­ers who may not be famil­iar with the neigh­bor­hoods or schools. At the end of each chap­ter there are exten­sive notes. A time­line, bib­li­og­ra­phy, and index are also includ­ed. This book will most like­ly be used by stu­dents for research as opposed to casu­al read­ing. Her bat-mitz­vah and her con­nec­tion to Judaism are dis­cussed. Jus­tice Kagan is a def­i­nite role mod­el for young Jew­ish women and they will enjoy learn­ing about her. Rec­om­mend­ed for ages 12 – 18

Deb­bie Fed­er is cur­rent­ly the Direc­tor of the LRC at Ida Crown Jew­ish Acad­e­my in Chica­go. She has her Mas­ters in Library and Infor­ma­tion Sci­ence from Domini­can Uni­ver­si­ty. She has spent more than ten years intro­duc­ing chil­dren and young adults to lit­er­a­ture and infor­ma­tion lit­er­a­cy at schools and pub­lic libraries. She is the author of Jel­ly Bean’s Art Muse­um Adven­ture and is hon­ored to have been a mem­ber of the Syd­ney Tay­lor Book Award Committee.

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