The global subjects of contemporary Korean American adoptee narratives

    Forskningsoutput: KonferensbidragMuntlig presentation


    In the first decades of the 21st century, a range of autobiographical narratives dealing with adoption from South Korea to the U.S. have been published, such as Katy Robinson’s A Single Square Picture (2002), Jane Jeong Trenka’s The Language of Blood (2003) and Fugitive Visions (2009), and Soojung Jo’s Ghost of Sangju (2015). Embodying two cultures and two races, the transnational/transracial adoptee can be seen as an example of globalization from within U. S. culture. This paper focuses on how issues of identity, race and belonging are negotiated in the life writing of transnational/transracial adoptees. Eng and Han (2000) suggest that the Asian adoptee suffers from “racial melancholia,” which stems from having to navigate Asianness and whiteness without the support of an immigrant community. The relationship between affect and belonging is further probed through the use of Sara Ahmed’s discussion of the melancholic migrant (“Multiculturalism and the Promise of Happiness,” 2007), and the arguments concerning anger made by critical race theorists, such as bell hooks (Killing Rage, 1996). Yet another aspect of the global scope of the literature are the similar types of narratives that are now being written in Scandinavia. The paper concludes by drawing parallels between the works of Danish Maja Lee Langvad and Swedish Astrid Trotzig, and the American adoptee narratives.


    Konferens10th Biennial Conference of the Swedish Association for American Studies (SAAS): Open Covenants: Pasts and Futures of Global America¸ Stockholm University, September 28- 30, 2018.
    Period80-01-01 → …

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