Texas Tornado: The Autobiography of a Crusader for Women's Rights and Family Justice

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9780806524481: Texas Tornado: The Autobiography of a Crusader for Women's Rights and Family Justice

Filled with inspiration and empowerment, a profound portrait of the extraordinary woman, and one of the nation's 30 most outstanding family lawyers, traces her entire life, detailing the many challenges and hardships she overcame to pave the way for women everywhere to gain equal access to credit and start their own business.

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From Publishers Weekly:

Best known for her work reforming married women's legal status in Texas, Raggio has enjoyed a reputation as a compassionate specialist in family law and, in her later years, has "come out of the closet" as a feminist. As she gleefully admits, when she started practicing law in 1953, such a practice was actually illegal, since as a married woman in Texas she didn't have the right to enter into contracts without her husband's signature. Once her career was launched, however, the reform of Texas's family code became her top priority and her most significant achievement. Raggio starts this autobiography with her birth in 1919 and her girlhood on her family's farm, learning how to make do. Talented in school, she made the most of that, too, even if it wasn't appropriate for a girl to attend college and excel. She married and had a child just as the U.S. entered WWII; her discussion of the stress of living through this war and its aftermath is the most dramatic chapter of her life story. After her husband was red-baited out of his postwar job, he pushed Raggio to go to law school. It was a struggle making ends meet at home, and being a female, sometimes pregnant, law student, but Raggio prevailed. A quiet pragmatist, she describes her life as one of "protective coloration," which, for the careful reader, may be more appealing than a tornado. 8 pages of b&w photos not seen by PW.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Booklist:

As a jurist, she ranks alongside such outstanding women lawyers as former Attorney General Janet Reno and Supreme Court justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. As a feminist, she has been as tireless a crusader for women's rights as Gloria Steinem or Barbara Jordan. At age 83, Raggio (with the assistance of coauthor Castleberry) reflects on a lifetime of unrivaled professional and personal accomplishments in an exceptional memoir of her extraordinary journey from an impoverished rural Texas childhood to an impressive career as one of the most influential legal advocates of her generation. At a time when women were prevented from even serving on juries, Raggio was practicing law and pioneering legal, financial, and humanitarian measures that would impact countless families, her own included. Through a tumultuous 47-year marriage that produced three children and seven grandchildren, Raggio battled life-threatening illnesses, crippling depression, financial upheaval, and political subversion yet never lost sight of the abiding principles by which she was destined to live her life. An inspiring and illuminating look at the unequaled contributions in one woman's quest for equality. Carol Haggas
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

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