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Enacting the family: the performance of kinship in adoptive parents’ weblogs


García González, Macarena (2013). Enacting the family: the performance of kinship in adoptive parents’ weblogs. European Journal of Life Writing, 2:59-78.

Abstract

Adoptive parents have turned out to be passionate bloggers. Couples adopting internationally are using the Internet intensely to share experiences and pieces of advice in the form of autobiographical accounts of their (troubled) adoption processes. These blogs not only connect a community facing multiple difficulties but, moreover, enact the family where the blood ties are missing. This study examines how the blogs of parents adopting girls in China perform parenthood by paralleling the adoption to the biological processes of pregnancy and giving birth. These blogs illuminate life writing’s “performativity” showing how they give the parents a sense of parenthood and offer the adoptees a sense of “daughterness”. Moreover, they reveal how the performance of the adoptive family not only serves domestic purposes but also legitimates the practice of international adoption of children, which is regarded with suspicion by the international community.

Abstract

Adoptive parents have turned out to be passionate bloggers. Couples adopting internationally are using the Internet intensely to share experiences and pieces of advice in the form of autobiographical accounts of their (troubled) adoption processes. These blogs not only connect a community facing multiple difficulties but, moreover, enact the family where the blood ties are missing. This study examines how the blogs of parents adopting girls in China perform parenthood by paralleling the adoption to the biological processes of pregnancy and giving birth. These blogs illuminate life writing’s “performativity” showing how they give the parents a sense of parenthood and offer the adoptees a sense of “daughterness”. Moreover, they reveal how the performance of the adoptive family not only serves domestic purposes but also legitimates the practice of international adoption of children, which is regarded with suspicion by the international community.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:06 Faculty of Arts > Department of Social Anthropology and Cultural Studies
Dewey Decimal Classification:790 Sports, games & entertainment
390 Customs, etiquette & folklore
300 Social sciences, sociology & anthropology
Language:English
Date:1 September 2013
Deposited On:07 Feb 2014 14:09
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 17:37
Publisher:University of Amsterdam
ISSN:2211-243X
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.5463/ejlw.2.27
Related URLs:http://ejlw.eu/ (Publisher)

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