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Disrupting KinshipTransnational Politics of Korean Adoption in the United States$
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Kimberly D. McKee

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780252042287

Published to Illinois Scholarship Online: September 2019

DOI: 10.5622/illinois/9780252042287.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM ILLINOIS SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.illinois.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Illinois University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in ISO for personal use.date: 27 July 2021

Generating a Market in Children

Generating a Market in Children

Chapter:
(p.19) Chapter 1 Generating a Market in Children
Source:
Disrupting Kinship
Author(s):

Kimberly D. McKee

Publisher:
University of Illinois Press
DOI:10.5622/illinois/9780252042287.003.0002

This chapter explores the transnational adoption industrial complex’s origins, paying careful attention to South Korea’s lack of support for unwed mothers and low-income families and the manufacturing of orphans by orphanages and adoption agencies. Korean families’ abilities to parent are curtailed by androcentric legislation concerning Korean citizenship, societal stigma against unwed motherhood, and limitations to women’s labor force participation. Orphanages and adoption agencies facilitate adoptees’ social death in the creation of new birthdates and names, among other natal details. Adoptees are also constructed as interchangeable with documented cases of adoptees being sent in place of another child. The chapter ends with a discussion of contemporary South Korean adoption policy and government overtures to adoptees as they return to the nation that previously cast them out.

Keywords:   low-income families, unwed motherhood, orphans, social death, orphanages, adoption policy, labor, androcentric legislation

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