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The Making of a Justice

The Making of a Justice

Reflections on My First 94 Years

A masterful and personal account of life on the Supreme Court that offers a unique understanding of American history from one of the most prominent jurists of our time

When Justice John Paul Stevens retired from the Supreme Court in 2010, he left a legacy of service unequaled in the history of the Court. During his 34-year tenure, Justice Stevens wrote more opinions than any other justice has. In THE MAKING OF A JUSTICE, John Paul Stevens recounts the first ninety-four years of his extraordinary life, offering an intimate and illuminating account of his service on the nation’s highest court.

Appointed by President Gerald Ford and eventually retiring during President Obama’s first term, Justice Stevens has been witness to, and an integral part of, landmark changes in American society.

With stories of growing up in Chicago, his work as a Naval traffic analyst at Pearl Harbor during World War II, and his early days in private practice, as well as a behind-the-scenes look at some of the most important Supreme Court decisions over the last four decades, THE MAKING OF A JUSTICE offers a warm and fascinating account of Justice Stevens’ unique and transformative American life.This comprehensive memoir is a must read for those trying to better understand our country and the Constitution.
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Genre: Nonfiction / Biography & Autobiography / Lawyers & Judges

On Sale: May 14th 2019

Price: $35 / $45.5 (CAD)

Page Count: 560

ISBN-13: 9780316489645

What's Inside

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Reader Reviews

Praise

Praise for Five Chiefs
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"A gentle memoir by a decent and accomplished public servant. Stevens opts not for jabs or evening scores but rather for reminiscences...Laced with observations on the court's architecture, traditions and even its seating arrangements, it is the collected ruminations of a man who has served his country in war and peace, across the decades... His memoir is as gracious as its author and a reminder that Stevens is more than a longtime member of the nation's highest court. He is a national treasure."—Jim Newton, Los Angeles Times
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"Five Chiefs is a 248-page bow-tie; like its dignified author, and his famous sartorial flourish, an unpretentious but important addition to American history...At its core, the book is not just another memoir from yet another judge. It marks instead the end of an era on the Supreme Court and in the broader swath of American law and politics...Stevens' focused eye gives way to a hundred or so smaller points, some densely legal, some historical, some even funny...Five Chiefs is the right book at the right time. It's a brief and largely defanged reminder of some of what we have lost in public life with the demise of the "moderate Republican" on Capitol Hill and the "practical conservative" on the federal bench...A fine new book.—Andrew Cohen, The Atlantic
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"A funny little memoir, as quirky and interesting as its author...The biggest value of Five Chiefs is its anecdotal color in filling in our understanding of the Court and its members."—Michael O'Donnell, Washington Monthly
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"An informative and very appealing new memoir of life on the Supreme Court...Justice Stevens not only shows extraordinary respect for the Court as an institution, but does the same for his former colleagues-even ones with whom he often disagreed...[It's] classic Justice Stevens: understated and generous to those he differs with, but absolutely clear on where he believes justice lies."—Adam Cohen, Time
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"In one way or another, Stevens finds a shared passion-social, military, or just tennis or piloting small aircraft-with everyone at the court, as a way of explaining that at a court, this intimately connected, the commonalities will always outweigh the differences...Coming from the last of a dying breed of jurists who genuinely believe you can learn something from everyone if you just listen hard enough, it is a lesson in how, at the Supreme Court, civility and cordiality matter more, even, than doctrine."—Dahlia Lithwick, Washington Post
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"There have been many Supreme Court memoirs, but I can safely say his is the most self-effacing. The title itself is other-directed...And it seems to pain the old-school, bow-tied Stevens that, in order to understand his connection to the chiefs 'some autobiographical comments must be tolerated.' ... Stevens can also be winningly wry."—The Boston Globe
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