What society gets wrong about transracial adoption: Sun Yung Shin, Shannon Gibney, and JaeRan Kim.
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Outsiders Within is a volume of essays, fiction, poetry, and art by transracially adopted writers from around the world who tackle difficult questions about how to survive the racist and ethnocentric worlds they inhabit. The volume was first published in 2006 and released in a new edition in 2021: a year in which reproduction and adoption politics have been spotlighted anew.
In this episode, three transracial adoptees talk about what society often gets wrong about adoption.
Sun Yung Shin was born in Seoul, Korea, and raised in the Chicago area. She is an award-winning poet, writer, and cultural worker, whose books include Unbearable Splendor and What We Hunger For. She lives in Minneapolis.
Shannon Gibney is a writer, educator, activist, and award-winning author. She was adopted by white parents in Ann Arbor, Michigan, in 1975. Gibney is a professor of English at Minneapolis College. Her forthcoming novel Botched explores themes of transracial adoption through speculative memoir.
JaeRan Kim was born in South Korea and adopted to the United States in 1971. She is associate professor at the University of Washington, Tacoma, in the social work program. She is a contributor to the volume The Complexities of Race (NYU Press), and her blog, Harlow’s Monkey, is one of the longest-running transracial adoption blogs in the US.