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How Chinese Are You?Adopted Chinese Youth and their Families Negotiate Identity and Culture$
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Andrea Louie

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9781479890521

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9781479890521.001.0001

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The Adoption Trip

(p.61) 3 Beginnings
How Chinese Are You?

Andrea Louie

NYU Press

In this chapter, the author reflects on her May 2002 trip to China with a group of adoptive parents as they received their adopted children and processed the adoption paperwork. She describes the trip as a liminal experience for parents and a reflection of the dichotomy between Asian and white, foreign and domestic, that permeates the Orientalist worldviews with which most white adoptive parents have been raised. Thus, the China trip provides an important context for the shaping of parents' understandings of the relationship between race, culture, and adoption. The author also considers the subjective processes by which Chineseness is experienced, mediated, and produced in an interactive, dialogic fashion and how the adoptive parents' trip to China allowed them to continue to experience and shape their versions of Chinese culture from afar after they returned home.

Keywords:   adoptive parents, Chinese adoption, white adoptive parents, China, race, culture, Chineseness, Chinese culture

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