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Fugitive Days

Memoirs of an Anti-War Activist
Narrated by: Jeff Woodman
Length: 11 hrs and 53 mins
5 out of 5 stars (2 ratings)

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Summary

Bill Ayers was born into privilege and is today a highly respected educator and community activist. In the late 1960s he was a founder of the militant activist group the Weather Underground. Living on the run, stealing explosives, and hiding from the law, Ayers was involved in the defining moments of his generation: the Days of Rage, SDS, the Black Panthers - and the explosion that killed his beloved comrade, Diana Oughton.

Fugitive Days tells of these turbulent events, and of the tenacity with which Ayers slowly rebuilt his life after it all came apart. Ayers writes openly about his regrets and what he continues to believe was right. The result is a profoundly honest account of an incendiary chapter in our history.

©2009 William Ayers (P)2012 Audible, Inc.

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Profile Image for Susie
  • Susie
  • 17-12-12

Bill Ayers Lays It All Out

This is the story of Bill Ayers, a survivor of the American New Left who, years later, was pilloried by the Tea Party, who claimed Chicago Bill was Obama's BFF-- a "secret socialist plot!"

All that was nonsense, but here's the real deal: Bill Ayer's life and comradeship is far more interesting than banal White House name-dropping.

Ayers came from a suburban upper-middle-class family, a prep school grad. Nothing in his family predicted: "Will Seize State Power Upon Maturity."

The story of how the Vietnam war and the civil rights movement changed Bill's consciousness forever is one that many of us will identify with. Bill became one of the founders of the Weather Underground and spent seven years in its disciplined cadre-- the details are excrutiating.

When it all fell apart, after WU bombings went belly-up tragic, Ayers spent ten years as a fugitive, living underground, nameless. Finally, in the third chapter of his life, he became a indefatiguable public education activist.

How did he survive, what does he revere— and what does he regret?

Ayers is an engaging storyteller who doesn't beg for our sympathy but earns your respect. I first read Bill's book when I was preparing to write my own memoir, which also covers violent and passionate years in the trenches of a minuscule-yet-influential American socialist left.

I wanted to read someone who wasn't going to "skip on the embarrassing parts" -- nor someone who lost their mind and became a bliss-ninny. Ayers did not disappoint me. Just reading about how his comrades negotiated their love lives, or the communal housework— in the middle of plotting the overthrow of the United States— had me laughing and crying simultaneously. Been there and survived that!

4 of 7 people found this review helpful

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  • Shane Bugbee
  • 20-07-19

awesome!!when will the film be made!

well written, well read.
what an amazing story.
history from the historic.

no matter your thoughts on Ayers or this movement, this is well worth the time.

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  • Jareth Copus
  • 30-05-19

inspiring and disheartening at the same time

a story of a man who did so much, inspired so many and who writes with purpose and feeling, yet somehow I still finished the book feeling let down somehow. not with the writing but the message. I look out my Chicago window and see no change.... I turn on the TV and see the same lies, I wonder if bill and the others struggled for nothing. yes their goal was Vietnam and they played a role in quelling that tide but now the enemy has come away twice as strong, our enemy learned from history, we didn't. perhaps I'm being cynical but I think the resistance stopped, either murdered in cold blood or lured away and willfully joining the comfortably silent or easily suppressed weekend protestors. prove me wrong America.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • A. M.
  • 29-11-15

Love to hate him...

Any additional comments?

The rants of an adult child: spoiled, self-indulgent, arrogant, and stupidly naive. I regret having listened to it.



0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Andrew
  • 19-04-16

Politics aside, not very good

Purchased this very controversial man's book because I wanted to hear about his experience. One minute you are in a poor neighborhood in Cleveland, then you are in the middle of a protest at the pentagon, and then all of a sudden you are somewhere else.

I like matter of fact writing with dates and places. If his style doesn't bother you then you may like the book. I definitely did not.

0 of 2 people found this review helpful