Figuring the Transnational 'Child-to-be-adopted': The Web as a Virtual Sociocultural Contact Zone for Intercountry Adoption

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Abstract

This paper presents our research which is part of a larger project that explores how to track and understand the linguistic, discursive and sociocultural contact zones or networks brought about by intercountry adoption. Using mediated discourse analysis, critical discourse analysis, membership categorisation analysis and interaction analysis, the project attempts to trace a host of discourses and contingent practices of care and kinship that are heterogeneously assembled to ‘translate’ a child (legally and/or willingly) from one familial ‘place’ or network in the world to another, crossing linguistic, sociocultural, racial, class and national boundaries in the process. We introduce in this paper our first observations of the discursive construction of the ‘child-to-be-adopted’ in the pre-adoption stage. We focus on the crucial role of the ‘intimate public sphere’ of the Internet from the parents’ point-of-view, specifically their personal web pages and online diaries that anticipate the ‘transnational’ mobility of the ‘waiting’ or abandoned child in a faraway place.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Consequences of Mobility : Linguistic and Sociocultural Contact Zones
Number of pages13
Place of PublicationRoskilde
PublisherDepartment of Language and Culture, Roskilde University
Publication date2005
ISBN (Electronic)8773496510
Publication statusPublished - 2005

Keywords

  • Transnational adoption
  • Mediated action
  • Websites
  • Multimodality
  • Nexus of practice

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    McIlvenny, P., & Raudaskoski, P. L. (2005). Figuring the Transnational 'Child-to-be-adopted': The Web as a Virtual Sociocultural Contact Zone for Intercountry Adoption. In The Consequences of Mobility: Linguistic and Sociocultural Contact Zones Department of Language and Culture, Roskilde University.