A Thousand Miles of Dreams is an evocative and intimate biography of two Chinese sisters who took very different paths in their quest to be independent women. Ling Shuhao arrived in Cleveland in 1925 to study medicine in the middle of a U.S. crackdown on Chinese immigrant communities, and her effort to assimilate began. She became an American named Amy, while her sister Ling Shuhua burst onto the Beijing literary scene as a writer of short fiction. They were both Chinese "modern girls" who sought to forge their own way in an era of social revolution and followed trajectories unimaginable to their parents' generation. The journeys of these extraordinary women spanned the twentieth century and three continents in a saga of East-West cultural exchange and personal struggle.
Sasha Su-Ling Welland has woven together the remarkable lives of her grandmother and great-aunt in this biography. She is assistant professor of anthropology and women studies at the University of Washington.
Prologue: Departure Part I: Moving House Chapter 1: Origins Chapter 2: Ambition Chapter 3: Disappointment Chapter 4: Courtyards Chapter 5: Mountains and Walls Part II: Casting Off Chapter 6: Lessons Chapter 7: Mist Chapter 8: Amid Ghosts Chapter 9: In the Streets Chapter 10: Romance Chapter 11: Gatherings Chapter 12: Modern Medicine Chapter 13: Crescent Moon Part III: Seeking a Mooring Chapter 14: Arrival Chapter 15: Adrift Chapter 16: Souvenirs Chapter 17: The Entangling Net Chapter 18: Rice Porridge Chapter 19: War Letters Chapter 20: An American Home Chapter 21: Wandering Chapter 22: The Chinese House Epilogue: Return