Louis Brandeis
Louis Dembitz Brandeis ˈbrændaɪs; November 13, 1856 – October 5, 1941) was an Associate Justice
Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States
Associate Justices of the Supreme Court of the United States are the members of the Supreme Court of the United States other than the Chief Justice of the United States...

 on the Supreme Court of the United States
Supreme Court of the United States
The Supreme Court of the United States is the highest court in the United States. It has ultimate appellate jurisdiction over all state and federal courts, and original jurisdiction over a small range of cases...

 from 1916 to 1939.

He was born in Louisville
Louisville, Kentucky
Louisville is the largest city in the U.S. state of Kentucky, and the county seat of Jefferson County. Since 2003, the city's borders have been coterminous with those of the county because of a city-county merger. The city's population at the 2010 census was 741,096...

, Kentucky
The Commonwealth of Kentucky is a state located in the East Central United States of America. As classified by the United States Census Bureau, Kentucky is a Southern state, more specifically in the East South Central region. Kentucky is one of four U.S. states constituted as a commonwealth...

, to Jewish immigrant parents who raised him in a secular mode
Secular Jewish culture
Secular Jewish culture embraces several related phenomena; above all, it is the international culture of secular communities of Jewish people, but it can also include the cultural contributions of individuals who identify as secular Jews...

. He enrolled at Harvard Law School
Harvard Law School
Harvard Law School is one of the professional graduate schools of Harvard University. Located in Cambridge, Massachusetts, it is the oldest continually-operating law school in the United States and is home to the largest academic law library in the world. The school is routinely ranked by the U.S...

, graduating at the age of twenty with the highest grade average in the college’s history.

Brandeis settled in Boston
Boston is the capital of and largest city in Massachusetts, and is one of the oldest cities in the United States. The largest city in New England, Boston is regarded as the unofficial "Capital of New England" for its economic and cultural impact on the entire New England region. The city proper had...

 where he became a recognized lawyer through his work on progressive
Progressive Era
The Progressive Era in the United States was a period of social activism and political reform that flourished from the 1890s to the 1920s. One main goal of the Progressive movement was purification of government, as Progressives tried to eliminate corruption by exposing and undercutting political...

 social causes.

The intensity and complexity of life, attendant upon advancing civilization, have rendered necessary some retreat from the world . . . ."

"The Right to Privacy," 4 Harvard L. Rev. 193, 196 (1890).

The bow must be strung and unstrung . . . there must be time also for the unconscious thinking which comes to the busy man in his play.

Letter to William Harrison Dunbar (February 2, 1893), reprinted in Letters of Louis D. Brandeis Volume I (1870–1907): Urban Reformer 109 (Melvin I. Urovsky & David W. Levy, eds., State University of New York Press 1971).

When a man feels that he cannot leave his work, it is a sure sign of an impending collapse.

Letter to Alfred Brandeis (March 8, 1897), reprinted in Letters of Louis D. Brandeis Volume I 127 (Melvin I. Urovsky & David W. Levy, eds., State University of New York Press 1971).

It is, as a rule, far more important how men pursue their occupation than what the occupation is which they select.

The Opportunity in the Law, 39 American Law Review 555, 555 (1905)

[N]o people ever did or ever can attain a worthy civilization by the satisfaction merely of material needs . . .

"Hours of Labor" (1906), reprinted in Brandeis on Democracy 91 (Philippa Strum, ed., 1995).

Publicity is justly commended as a remedy for social and industrial diseases. Sunlight is said to be the best of disinfectants; electric light the most efficient policeman.

Other People's Money—and How Bankers Use It (1914)

A man is a better citizen of the United States for being also a loyal citizen of his state, and of his city; for being loyal to his family, and to his profession or trade; for being loyal to his college or his lodge. . . . For only through the ennobling effect of its strivings can we develop the best that is in us and give to this country the full benefit of our great inheritance.

The Jewish Problem And How to Solve It (1915)

What are the American ideals? They are the development of the individual for his own and the common good; the development of the individual through liberty, and the attainment of the common good through democracy and social justice.

“True Amercianism” (1915)

[N]o law, written or unwritten, can be understood without a full knowledge of the facts out of which it arises, and to which it is to be applied.

The Living Law, 10 Illinois Law Review 461, 467 (1915-16)

There is in most Americans some spark of idealism, which can be fanned into a flame. It takes sometimes a divining rod to find what it is; but when found, and that means often, when disclosed to the owners, the results are often extraordinary.

The Words of Justice Brandeis (1953)