Posted on 02/22/2019 at 08:00 AM by Sadye Scott-Hainchek

When many of us think about an influx of Chinese coming to America, we think back to the railroad-construction days.

But there’s a much more recent wave that left an equally large mark on both countries: those who fled after China’s communist revolution.

In honor of the seventieth anniversary of that event, NPR talked to author Helen Zia, whose book Last Boat Out Of Shanghai discusses the mass immigration that followed it.

The book’s title refers back to an observation Zia’s relatives often made — that they’d taken that last boat — but that she didn’t understand until her mother opened up about the experiences, when Zia was in her fifties.

You can listen to Zia’s conversation with Steve Inskeep below or read a transcript on NPR’s website.

Categories: Author Interview

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