Berättelser om adoption

by Martinell Barfoed, Elizabeth, PhD

Abstract (Summary)
Abstract: Adoption Stories (Berättelser om adoption) This dissertation explores adoption stories in a Swedish context. The aim is two-fold: First, how adoption is presented by adopted adults; second, how adoption is constructed in the press. The way adoptees create meaning of “being adopted” is investigated; the way those stories are shaped culturally is also explored. The study was conducted in a qualitative tradition with a constructionist and narrative approach. The empirical material consisted of 20 individual interviews, a focus group interview and an analysis of adoption issues in media. The age span of the adoptees in the individual interviews was 25-65 years. The articles examined stemmed from daily newspapers. The time period studied was 2003-2005. 124 articles were chosen for closer investigation. Two different storylines were uncovered in the personal stories – adoption as a complicated experience and adoption as an uncomplicated experience. In the first storyline the abandoned child was linked with psychological and social interpretations of “being different”; in the second, on the other hand, a story of the chosen child, brought up with a loving family, was built. In this storyline issues of being different were not raised, on the contrary being adopted appeared almost irrelevant. In the press two discourses were identified – adoption as a solution (for “not having children” or “not having parents”) and adoption as a problem (for example individual problems regarding “identity” or adoption as a contested practice). The analysis illustrates that personal stories are framed by culturally available resources. It is emphasized that the qualitative interview is a relational practice. This means that interviews must be considered in context, the local context of its production, but also in a broader cultural context.
Bibliographical Information:


School:Lunds universitet

School Location:Sweden

Source Type:Doctoral Dissertation

Keywords:SOCIAL SCIENCES; självkonstruktioner; identitet; diskurs; intervjustudie; Key words: Adoption; adoptee; story; narrative analysis; interview study; discourse; self construction; identity; media analysis; social constructionism Nyckelord: adoption; adopterad; berättelse; narrativ analys; narrativ; medieanalys; social konstruktionism


Date of Publication:01/01/2008

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