Lisa Bloom: Harvey Weinstein Bought Her Silence

This article is an excerpt from the Shortform book guide to "Catch and Kill" by Ronan Farrow. Shortform has the world's best summaries and analyses of books you should be reading.

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What is the connection between Lisa Bloom and Harvey Weinstein? Why would a sexual assault lawyer defend a serial rapist?

Lisa Bloom is an American attorney who made a career of defending women who have accused powerful men of sexual harassment. Shockingly, Lisa Bloom was also Harvey Weinstein’s advisor amid his sexual assault scandal.

Read more about Lisa Bloom’s role in the Harvey Weinstein scandal.

Lisa Bloom and Harvey Weinstein: Revealing Her True Colors

Early in his process of investigating Harvey Weinstein’s sexual assault allegations, investigative reporter Ronan Farrow reached out to the attorney Lisa Bloom. Bloom was a powerful attorney who was well-known for defending survivors of sexual assault and, crucially, had been a vocal defender of Farrow’s sister Dylan when the latter accused her father of molestation. Bloom was, to Farrow, a close friend. 

As Farrow would find out later, Lisa Bloom was on Harvey Weinstein’s payroll all along, advising the serial rapist on the best tactics to use to smear and discredit his accusers, while publicly presenting herself as a champion and defender of women. In a chilling display of treachery, she used her relationship with Farrow to try and get him to kill his own story, on behalf of her true client, Harvey Weinstein.

When the New York Times published Ronan Farrow’s expose on Harvey Weinstein, Lisa Bloom—showing her true colors—tried to spin it away with a canned statement characterizing the allegations as, at worst, mild indiscretions. In her statement, Bloom wrote that Weinstein was an “old dinosaur learning new ways,” whose inappropriate actions stemmed more from his innocent misunderstanding of changing social and workplace norms than from any underlying predatory intent. According to Bloom, it was all an innocent misunderstanding.

Lisa Bloom: Harvey Weinstein Bought Her Silence

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Like what you just read? Read the rest of the world's best book summary and analysis of Ronan Farrow's "Catch and Kill" at Shortform.

Here's what you'll find in our full Catch and Kill summary:

  • How Ronan Farrow uncovered rampant sexual abuse and assault by Harvey Weinstein
  • How NBC tried to intimidate Farrow into killing the Weinstein story
  • How the media and legal systems let Weinstein's abuse continue for decades

darya

Darya’s love for reading started with fantasy novels (The LOTR trilogy is still her all-time-favorite). Growing up, however, she found herself transitioning to non-fiction, psychological, and self-help books. She has a degree in Psychology and a deep passion for the subject. She likes reading research-informed books that distill the workings of the human brain/mind/consciousness and thinking of ways to apply the insights to her own life. Some of her favorites include Thinking, Fast and Slow, How We Decide, and The Wisdom of the Enneagram.

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