Screening of ‘On the Basis of Sex’ Leads to Lively Panel Discussion

On a cool evening in March 2019, the Poly community gathered in the Richard Perry Theatre for a screening of On The Basis of Sex, a biopic about Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, as part of the Context speaker series. The film was produced by alumnus Robert Cort ‘64, who returned to campus that day to talk to students. Following the film, Cort was joined onstage by another esteemed guest, New York State Solicitor General Barbara Underwood P’04 and new Director of Arts Outreach Robert Aberlin ‘62, P’00, ‘03, for a lively panel discussion moderated by Maggie Moslander, Poly’s Constitutional Law teacher.

Underwood, who recently made history as the first woman to serve as Attorney General of New York, engaged the audience with stories about her life and career—she clerked for Supreme Court Associate Justice Thurgood Marshall from 1971 to 1972.

For Cort, sharing his film with the Poly community was the culmination of a day visiting with students in classrooms and the staff of The Polygon, where he served as an editor. He connected with student Sofia Russo ‘19 over a mutual love of storytelling and celebrating one’s own authentic voice. “You have to stick with your gut about your creations,” he advised Russo. “If you change them in a way you think will make other people like them more, you lose what makes your work special to you.”

Designed to inspire, inform, and foster communication, the speaker series, Context, was the brainchild of Michal Hershkovitz P’16, ‘18, now Assistant Head of School, Academics. The series launched in 2018.