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In the older photographs in Rebels in Law: Voices in History of Black Women Lawyers, the women seem a strait-laced, proper lot, demurely coiffed society ladies who probably held afternoon teas and were known by their husbands’ first names. Black women’s efforts to excel in law—a conservative field often blatantly hostile to their presence—even now place them in the vanguard of those who challenge the status quo. Using archival materials and original submissions, editor J. Clay Smith has compiled articles by and interviews with black women lawyers, from the first black female law school graduates of the late 19th century to contemporary pioneers Lani Guinier, Anita Hill, and Eleanor Holmes Norton. The women reflect on the American legal system, the civil rights movement, and their struggles against the “double jeopardy” of racism and sexism. Smith discusses and signs copies of his book at 3 p.m. at Sisterspace & Books, 1515 U St. NW. Free. (202) 332-3433. (Dawn L. Hannaham)