Born to troubled and downwardly mobile parents with leftist leanings, Sylvia learned early that life isn't fair. Plunging on from a lonely and less than pampered childhood, she was hungry for new experiences and eager to make the world a better place for all.
She earned Ivy League degrees, dabbled at a free spirit's globe-trotting lifestyle, and started playing meaningful roles at the forefront of major progressive movements of the latter twentieth century. She attracted--and sometimes married--bold, venturesome men and, when she found herself a single mother, built a solid career as a college professor and author.
Activist Odyssey is Sylvia's front row, eyewitness account of Berkeley in the 1960s, then preparing high school graduates from New York's poorest neighborhoods--where their schools systematically shortchanged them--to go on to college. This led her to intrigues with Black Panthers and their formidable mentor. In following decades, she continued to oppose the Vietnam War and the arms race, campaigned for abortion rights, traveled and spoke out for Latin American solidarity movements, and helped shelter the homeless. With candor and wit, she recreates all this and more in the context of her tempestuous personal life, her loves and losses.