As the title implies, this book is about perspective, and the author shares her personal perspective as a Caucasian mother of three children, two of whom were adopted from Korea. Chris Winston s life changed when she traveled to Korea to meet her daughter for the first time. Her perspective on family, life, love and so many other things changed the minute she brought a child of a different ethnicity into her life. In her book, she shares her adoptive parent journey with others, so they can better understand her perspective. Winston speaks as a parent and leader in the Korean adoption community. Her voice is strong and clear as she provides wisdom to those who follow in her footsteps as adoptive parents. She offers powerful insight to help others in raising their transracially adopted children to adulthood. "A Euro American on a Korean Tour at a Thai Restaurant in China" is a strong piece of work that will serve as a wonderful guide to other adoptive families. As president of the Korean Adoptee/Adoptive Network, Winston has the unique perspective of helping establish a national organization designed to fit the needs of the entire Korean American community, especially adoptive families. I believe this wisdom gives her much credibility, and it would be wise for parents of transracial adoptees to pay close attention to Winston s successes and failures with this organization. One day the Chinese adoptees will seek a similar organization to address their needs, and they will be lucky that the groundwork has already been established. For those looking for the step beyond the basics of parenting transracially adopted children, this would be a great book to read. While reading, remember to open your heart and mind to new thoughts and ideas and this book will unfold some wonderful suggestions. --Kim Phagan-Hansel Adoption Today Magazine
Adoptees, experts say, will likely undergo an identity crisis on a more serious level than others. It is not difficult to assume the challenge will increase if the adoptees do not share the race or more bluntly, skin color with their adoptive parents. And when those adoptees turn to their own ethnic community, realizing their different upbringings cannot make them fit into that community either another frustration. Such are the layers of challenge involving interethnic adoption. Hence comes the complexity of Chris Winston s book title A Euro-America on a Korean Tour at a Thai Restaurant in China . The book was published last month. Winston is an American with two adopted Korean children. It is a big deal to lose your original parents. Most don t, Winston, 50, president of the Korean American Adoptee Adoptive Family Network (KAAN), told The Korea Times during her visit to Seoul for the 8th annual KAAN conference held June 30 through July 2. And inter-country adoptees lost their heritage at that. When they later struggle to reclaim it, it s also a challenge, she said. Winston, who due to fertility problems could not give birth to another child after her first son, Alexis, felt three was a very small family. When she and her husband, Mark, decided to adopt, they did not necessarily consider inter-country adoption. But the timing and the agencies situation led them to a meeting with their first adoptive daughter Diana, then 1-year-old, from South Korea in April 1988, shortly before the Seoul Olympics. Having fallen in love with Korea during their first visit to pick up Diana and, hoping to balance the ethnicity in their family, they began another adoption process in 1989. This was despite Korea s slow international adoption process arising from the Korean government s upset over negative publicity about the nation being a child-exporting country. --Seo Dong-shin, Staff Reporter The Korea Times Newspaper
In responding to her own adopted children's needs, Chris Winston and fellow pioneers gradually birthed a new kind of Korean American community. She describes with honesty the pain and joy of her family's transformation into a Korean American family, and how, in extending this effort to others, adopted Koreans were empowered to claim their place as an emerging group of Korean Americans. This book chronicles the long journey to community, and all the persistence, patience, and diplomacy that journey demands of us. --Martha Vickery, editor Korean Quarterly
About the Author
In April 1988, Chris Winston and her husband, Mark, began to experience life as the adoptive parents of a one year old Koreanborn daughter, Diana, and a nine year old son, Alexis, who was born to them. Their son David, then five and a half, joined the family from Korea in December 1989. The founder of two adoption community organizations, Friends of Korea in Northern California and The Korean American Adoptee Adoptive Family Network (KAAN), a national networking organization, Chris life s work has been in creating opportunities for dialogue. She hopes that this book will be one more such opportunity. Proceeds from this book will be used on projects that promote better insight and understanding within the adoption community.