Book Talk: Invisible: The Forgotten Story of the Black Woman Lawyer Who Took Down America’s Most Powerful Mobster

Book Talk: Invisible: The Forgotten Story of the Black Woman Lawyer Who Took Down America's Most Powerful Mobster
February 12, 2019

Please join the Black Law Students Association and the Lillian Goldman Law Library for a book talk with Professor Stephen L. Carter ’79 and Leah Carter ’12. They will discuss Professor Carter’s new book, Invisible: The Forgotten Story of the Black Woman Lawyer Who Took Down America’s Most Powerful Mobster.

The event will take place on Tuesday, February 19, 2019 at 12:10 – 1:30pm in SLB127

Professor Carter delves into his past and discovers the inspiring story of his grandmother’s extraordinary life.

She was brilliant, ambitions, and unafraid to break barriers.  As the only member of a squad of twenty high-powered lawyers who was not a white male, Eunice Huton Carter devised the strategy that in the 1930’s sent Mafia chieftain Lucky Luciano to prison.  She achieved so much – but what could she have accomplished if not for the barriers of race and gender?

Eunice Hunton Carter, Stephen Carter’s grandmother, was the daughter of a distinguished African-American couple and the granddaughter of slaves.  A graduate of Smith College and Fordham Law School, she became a key member of the legal team charged with breaking up organized crime in New York City.  By the 1940’s, she was one of the most famous black women in America.  At every turn, Eunice encountered prejudice and her triumphs were shadowed by tragedy.  Greatly complicating her rise was her difficult relationship with her younger brother, Alphaeus, an avowed Communist who, together with his friend Dashiell Hammett, went to prison during the McCarthy era.  Yet she remained unbowed, constantly reinventing herself; somehow she found a way forward.

Moving, haunting, fast-paced, and written with dazzling power, Invisible tells the true story of a woman who often found her path blocked by the social and political expectations of her time. But Eunice Carter never accepted defeat, and thanks to her grandson’s remarkable book, her long forgotten story is once again visible.

Stephen L. Carter ’79 is William Nelson Cromwell Professor of Law. 

Leah Carter is a member of Yale Law School Class of 2012.

A non-pizza lunch will be provided.

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