Life Lines: Writing Transcultural Adoption - New Horizons in Contemporary Writing (Paperback)
  • Life Lines: Writing Transcultural Adoption - New Horizons in Contemporary Writing (Paperback)
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Life Lines: Writing Transcultural Adoption - New Horizons in Contemporary Writing (Paperback)

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£28.99
Paperback 256 Pages / Published: 20/04/2017
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Adoptions that cross the lines of culture, race and nation are a major consequence of conflicts around the globe, yet their histories and representations have rarely been considered. Life Lines: Writing Transcultural Adoption is the first critical study to explore narratives of transcultural adoption from contemporary Britain, Ireland and America: fictions, films and memoirs made by those within the adoption 'triad' or those concerned with the pain and possibilities of transcultural adoption. While acknowledging the sobering inequalities which engender transcultural adoptions and the lasting upset of sundered relations, at the same time John McLeod considers the transfigurative and creative propensity of imagining transcultural adoption as radically calling into question ideas of biogenetic attachment, racial genealogy, cultural identity and normative family-making. How might the predicament of `being adopted' transculturally enable the transformative agency of `adoptive being' for all? Exploring works by Andrea Levy, Barbara Kingsolver, Toni Morrison, Sebastian Barry, Caryl Phillips, Jackie Kay and several others, Life Lines makes a groundbreaking intervention in such fields as transcultural studies, postcolonial thought, and adoption theory and practice.

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
ISBN: 9781350030350
Number of pages: 256
Weight: 367 g
Dimensions: 234 x 156 x 14 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS
Life Lines makes a bold and welcome contribution to the scholarly conversations concerning transnational/transracial adoption that have already proven so vital to rethinking its myriad harms and protean possibilities. * ALH Online Review *
[McLeod] explores transcultural adoption in an ambitious work that pulls a wide range of literature together ... This is a book for anyone interested in transracial/transcultural adoption, which includes long term transracial fostering, which seems to be overlooked. For this reason, Life Lines is sure to enhance the knowledge of social workers and health care professionals. * The Voice: Family Matters *
Life Lines is a compelling and scholarly analysis of the literature of adoption, which also takes us on an evocative, and ultimately moving, journey of personal discovery. It is an important book that engages both the head and the heart and deserves the widest possible readership. * Caryl Phillips *
This big-hearted book confronts with great honesty the painful material histories that can render human beings adoptable, even as it moves optimistically to embrace the "transfigurative agency promised by adoptive being." "Life lines" are the "multidirectional lines of attachment" by means of which members of the adoption triad may forge a self in vital connection to both biogenetic and adoptive kin. In a series of dazzling readings of recent novels and memoirs about transcultural adoption, Life Lines displays the creativity that adoption both demands and inspires. Ultimately, we could all do well to accept "adoptive being" as the condition of human life itself: a way of being in the world that is never simply singular, that is enmeshed in multiple "life lines," and that opens onto "unguessed futures." * Margaret Homans, Yale University, USA *
As adoption becomes more visible and often more controversial, literature's varying representation of adoption has emerged as a subject for study. Most of this work has focused on American novels and memoirs. In Life Lines, John McLeod contributes new perspectives to this exploration with his knowledge of British and Irish writing, postcolonial theory, and cultural studies. McLeod develops the concept of transcultural adoption, including adoptions that cross nation, race, ethnicity, and/or religion, and is especially interested in the degree to which texts show adoptees creatively negotiating both blood and adoptive connections. His chapters focus on literary treatments of adoption secrecy and searches for birth parents, connections to adoption of larger histories of race, colonialism, and misogyny (he is very aware of how the latter affects the treatment of birthmothers), and new models of kinship. Readers from both sides of the Atlantic will find fresh insights in his informed, sophisticated and subtly personal discussions of film (Secrets and Lies), novels by Andrea Levy, Toni Morrison, Sebastian Barry, Barbara Kingsolver, Buchi Emecheta, and Caryl Phillips, and memoirs by Mei-Ling Hopgood, E.R. Braithwaite, Hannah Pool, Catherine McKinley, and Jackie Kay. * Marianne Novy, Professor of English, University of Pittsburgh, USA, and author of Reading Adoption *

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