Ruth Lor started life Chinese in a small Canadian town. Driven by curiosity, a yen for adventure, and a wish to be useful, she managed to spend her life fighting racial discrimination.
In Washington, D.C., she fought segregation by sitting in at "whites only" restaurants and swimming in "whites only" pools. She planted trees in Mexico, painted houses for Inuit victims of tuberculosis in the Canadian Arctic, and helped distribute food to refugees in Taiwan. When China reopened to foreigners after its Cultural Revolution, Ruth wrote the first English-language guidebook about that enormous country.
Ruth covered the war in Vietnam, crossed Himalayan passes on foot and horseback, and faced down an angry elephant in Africa. She worked in India to reduce prejudice against that country's caste of transgender hijras. She and her husband housed refugees in their Maryland home after the Vietnam War ended.
Now in her nineties, Ruth still works with refugees, and she still brightens her corner of the world, wherever she is.
Ruth's vivid memoir challenges us to think about justice, responsibility, family, culture, and belonging in more expansive ways. -Alison Li
This account of a life devoted to the battle against racism couldn't be more timely. -Louise Lore
Wisdom, honesty, discovery-I have found these gifts and more in this beautifully written memoir that gently, deftly, takes us through the many rooms and corners of life. -Aaron Haddad
A fascinating tale of adventures spanning continents and decades, covering history as it was made, seen through the eyes of a curious, thoughtful Canadian. -Sonali Verma
I have known Ruth since our days in Almaty, Kazakhstan . . . and I feel blessed to know her even better through this engaging memoir. -Nancy Swing
Ruth Lor Malloy
was a key figure in fighting against discrimination in Ontario in the 1950s. She participated in the high profile Dresden restaurant sit-in of 1954. In 1973, she published the first English-language guidebook to China in North America. Throughout her decades-long career, Malloy worked tirelessly to foster intercultural dialogue and justice for marginalized groups.