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Culture Keeping: White Mothers, International Adoption, and the Negotiation of Family Difference Paperback – November 28, 2008

2.7 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

Culture Keeping is a sensitive and sympathetic, yet intellectually sophisticated examination of the dynamics of ethnic identity among families who have adopted children from China and Russia. Heather Jacobson shows how American racial dynamics and conceptions of kinship shape the ways in which these interracial families are seen by others and the ways in which adoptive parents work to provide their children with an ethnic identity that reflects their birthplaces. Theoretically rich and empirically rigorous, this book is a valuable contribution to the fields of sociology and family studies. It also is a wonderful resource for adoptive parents because it provides a wider view of the cultural practices and child rearing strategies they engage in.
--Mary C. Waters, M.E. Zukerman Professor of Sociology, Harvard University

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Heather Jacobson examines the recent wave of adoptions of children from China and Russia by focusing on a relatively new social phenomenon, the practice by international adoptive parents, mothers in particular, of incorporating aspects of their children's cultures of origin into their families' lives. "Culture keeping" is now standard in the adoption world, though few adoptive parents, the majority of whom are white and native-born, have experience with the ethnic practices of their children's homelands prior to adopting. The choices these women make about culture, Jacobson argues, offer a window into dominant ideas of race and the "American Family," and into how social differences are conceived and negotiated in the United States.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 216 pages
  • Publisher: Vanderbilt University Press (November 28, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0826516181
  • ISBN-13: 978-0826516183
  • Product Dimensions: 5.4 x 0.7 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 2.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,802,655 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Paperback
I have never written a review before on Amazon but felt compelled after reading the previous one. To be clear, this is a book based on interviews with White parents of Chinese and Russian children so it is in some ways a research paper. But it is not boring at all and raises very important issues surrounding how White parents approach teaching about their adopted children's cultural heritage. It is a smart book that should be read by scholars as well as parents.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The book is written more for academics than for the every day person wanting to bring international culture into the life of their adoptive child. Author writes from a progressive/liberal mind set.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I was hoping this book would offer some helpful insight on ways to bring my son's birth culture into our lives. This book was not at all helpful, and quite honestly was boring to read. I was very disappointed.
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