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Activism & Action

A Sit Down With Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Gloria Steinem

 Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, left, and Gloria Steinem in Justice Ginsburg’s chambers in the Supreme Court. Credit Hilary Swift for The New York Times
Photo source: Hilary Swift for The New York Times

Feminist trailblazers and longtime friends, Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Gloria Steinem recently sat down with New York Times writer Phillip Gaines at Ginsburg’s Supreme Court chambers to talk about everything from rap names to the origins of the women’s movement and the setbacks they turned into inspiration along the way.

Here are a few of their most inspiring quotes to get you started, before you read their full conversation.


“Justice [Sandra Day] O’Connor once said: ‘Suppose there had been no discrimination when we finished law school. We’d be retired partners from large law firms today.’”
– Ruth Bader Ginsburg


“There were many firms who put up sign-up sheets that said, “Men Only.” And I had three strikes against me. First, I was Jewish, and the Wall Street firms were just beginning to accept Jews. Then I was a woman. But the killer was my daughter Jane, who was 4 by then.”
– Ruth Bader Ginsburg


“The great thing about obstacles is that they cause you to identify with other groups of people who are facing obstacles.”
– Gloria Steinem


“Equal pay for women would be the biggest economic stimulus this country could ever have.”
– Gloria Steinem


“[W]hat we want in the future will only happen if we do it every day. So, kindness matters enormously. And empathy. Finding some point of connection.”
– Gloria Steinem