How Transracial Adoptees Navigate Race as They Age

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How do children of color adopted by white parents learn about race and their place in our racially aware society?  Large numbers of children have been adopted from China, Guatemala, Korea, Ethiopia, and other African countries, as well as the thousands of domestic adoption of African American and biracial/multiracial children by white parents. How do transracial adoptees form their racial identity and what can adoptive parents do to help? Join our guest adult transracial adoptee and adoption researcher, Dr. Gina Samuels.  Dr. Samuels is an Associate Professor at the University of Chicago’s School of Social Service Administration and a faculty affiliate at The Center for the Study of Race, Politics, and Culture. Her research and publications examine transracial adoption, multiracial identity formation, and family identity and belonging among young adults with foster care and adoption histories.

Highlights of the show (click to expand)
  • How do adoption and race play out separately and together in determining racial identity?
  • How do we determine well being in adoptees?
  • What are the needs of transracial adoptees?
  • Is it important that a transracial adoptee identify with their culture of birth?
  • What are typical pattern in how transracial adoptees identity tends to change as they age?
  • What are the struggles of being bi-cultural?
  • Being transracially adopted and raised by a white family marks you
  • How much should white parents try to prepare their transracially adopted children for racial politics?
  • What can parents do to prepare their kids for being perceived to have multiple cultural and racial identities depending on the audience?
  • What does it mean to be a multiracial family?
  • Creating sibling groups that do or don’t match racially
  • Transracial adoption – good or bad for children of color
  • Can white parents raise children of color to have high self esteem and positive racial identity?

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Image credit: Spence-Chapin Services