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Daughter of the Empire StateThe Life of Judge Jane Bolin$
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Jacqueline A. McLeod

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780252036576

Published to Illinois Scholarship Online: April 2017

DOI: 10.5406/illinois/9780252036576.001.0001

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Politics of Preparation

Politics of Preparation

The Making of the Nation’s First African American Woman Judge

(p.26) 3. Politics of Preparation
Daughter of the Empire State

Jacqueline A. McLeod

University of Illinois Press

This chapter discusses Jane Bolin's career in the legal profession and the lived experiences that produced her as the nation's first African American woman judge. A member of a small unit of black women lawyers, Bolin's early practice mirrored that of other black women lawyers who gained entrance, but not full integration, into the legal profession. Jane's strides in the legal profession from 1931 to 1939 were made relatively quickly, suggesting a tale of easy access and an unobstructed path. However, an examination of her professional life beyond the pioneering peaks reveals the pervasive discrimination that Bolin overcame, and unravels the threads of gender, class, race, credentialism, and politics that colored the fabric of her professional life.

Keywords:   Jane Bolin, black women lawyers, legal profession, gender discrimination, racism, credentialism

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