NPR reports “Most Adopted Children are Happy”

I feel like I’ve been saying “Good grief!” all day long. NPR reports:

According to the most extensive national data ever collected on adopted children and their families in the United States, the vast majority of adopted children are in good health and fare well on measures of social and emotional well being.

Called “Adoption USA,” the report was written by researchers at Child Trends and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. It was based on questions in the first-ever National Survey of Adoptive Parents, a federal survey of 2,000 families that had adopted children through foster care, private domestic adoption or international adoption.

Interesting. They surveyed adoptive parents about how their kids are doing? Apparently, the researchers think children and young adults can’t speak for themselves. Apparently, adoptees don’t grow up into adults who are thoughtful and reflective about their experiences. Apparently, adoptees are not experts on their own experiences. It’s good that researchers find that most adoptees are happy and healthy, but when those stories are filtered through the adoptive parents, I wonder just how true they are. As well, stories like these tend to promote adoption and make less visible the ugly underside of adoption – the benign or covert racism/classism/nationalism/entitlement, the intercultural conflict, abandonment and loss issues, ethical practices issues, etc.

Interestingly, they also report:

Adopted children are more likely to have been diagnosed with depression, ADD/ADHD or some sort of behavior disorder.

This is consistent with Tobias Hubinette and (Beth) Hei Kyong Lo’s research that transracially/transnationally adopted Koreans have higher rates of depression, mental health issues, and suicide.

Read the full article here.

ABC’s “Find My Family” Show

Good grief, is ABC meditatizing family reunions? I wonder if Tom Brodman (executive producer) learned this from the Korean TV show 아침마당…

JH: Both host Tim Greene and Lisa Joyner talk on the show about being adopted.

TF: They both found their own birth parents so they’ve lived it, which was really important to us. For the family member who contacts us, for the person they’re trying to find if we find them, for other family members who may be touched by this as well. We talk a lot about this internally but certainly if you read about the adoption triad, both the adoptee, the parents who gave them up and the adopted parents, there are a lot of things that needed to be handled delicately and handled right. We’re incredibly conscious about treading lightly on this subject matter and wouldn’t it really help if the hosts themselves had lived through it. So [Tim and Lisa] knew what to say and they knew how delicate it was.

It’ll be interesting to see how this American show differs from/is similar to the Korean reunion shows.

Read more about the show from the ABC website, and an interview about the show here.

Gift Drive for Unwed Mothers and Their Babies

Reposted from the TRACK (Truth and Reconciliation for the Adoption Community in Korea) website:

This Holiday season ASK and TRACK are excited to continue our support of the group of unwed Korean mothers raising their children. Miss Mamma Mia is a newly founded organization that is a support network for single moms but more importantly, it’s a group of dedicated mothers working to improve and change the laws that affect single mothers in Korea.

This group was started by single mothers for single mothers, and they have been supporting both ASK and TRACK in our various events and campaigns.  Therefore, this holiday season, we would like to return their support them through gift giving!  ^.^  We have asked them to compose a brief bio, and a list of things they need that would make their lives easier and more FUN!

Please check the list and donate an item or two if you can!  Or gather a group of friends and donate all the items to a whole family!  Or gather a group to donate a more expensive item! Below you will be able to find the bios, the items, and the estimated cost of the items on the wish list.  If you are interested in participating, in order to prevent duplicate purchases, you can check the updated list of which items have already been purchased and which items still remain here on the TRACK Web site. Once you have picked an item you would like to donate, please respond to with the name of the family (child), the number corresponding to the gift and your gift drop-off method.  If possible please have the item gift wrapped.  You can arrange to give them to Joo Ae directly in Sinchon, but can meet her as well.  Or you can drop them off at KoRoot.  Or lastly you can order gifts online and have them delivered to KoRoot. When doing this be sure to address it as:

KoRoot뿌리의집: ASK/ TRACK
53-56, Cheongwoon-dong, Jongno-gu
Seoul 110-030, South Korea

All gifts need to be received by December 12th as the mothers and children will be receiving them the following day.

>>>>For those of you who are too busy to shop or who live abroad you can still give a gift!  You can buy it online on GMarket at or  you if you prefer, you can simply donate money (by bank transfer) and JooAe will purchase the present for you. If this is your preferred method, please let her know by December 9th so she has an ample amount of time to find and buy the gift.  For those in Korea great places to find these gifts would be Emart, Lotte Mart, and Toys R Us (Jamsil Station or Guri Gu).

Finally, if you just want to give a donation of money to support Miss Mamma Mia’s activities, you can Paypal it to TRACK at (and please leave a note that it is for the moms). (Direct bank account of Miss Mamma Mia is 국민은행 고윤희(한국미혼모가족협회). ACCT #5457801-04-053780. (Swift code CZNBKRSE)

And most importantly if you say you will purchase a gift PLEASE follow through on your commitment as it is very important to the Moms and the kids.  Lets try to fulfill the entire wish list and get them these gifts!  Please feel free to forward this email to anyone who might be interested as well; there’s no restriction on who can participate.  Thank you again for your support of the moms of Miss Mamma Mia!

  • Click HERE to read an article about advocating for social justice for unwed mothers in Korea.
  • Click HERE to read an article about supporting unwed mothers in Korea.
  • Click HERE to see the wish list.



Transnationalism and Children’s Literature

The funny thing is, the moment I am in one country, I am homesick for the other.

Allen Say, in Grandfather’s Journey, winner of the 1994 Caldecott Award. About this book, he says,

Grandfather’s Journey is essentially a dream book, for the life’s journey is an endless dreaming of the places we have left behind and the places we have yet to reach.

Read Allen Say’s Caldecott acceptance speech here.

I found it on the Internet!

Funny that in the same week I found two websites that profiled and/or incorporated my comments into an article; actually, I didn’t find them myself. A friend saw my profile on (they requested my participation so I submitted a profile, but was not notified that it was approved and posted!) and the St Kate PR folks found an article from Sept 23, 2009 that quoted me (from a questionnaire I filled out a couple months ago for the publisher, Lee & Low).

Paula Yoo’s Shining Star: The Anna May Wong Story is an important contribution to children’s literature (not just Asian American children’s literature) because it debunks the simplistic notion that Anna May Wong was nothing more than an Asian fetish for the white American male. Paula writes about the anxiety and discomfort that Anna May Wong experienced as a minority actress in a majority white environment — an environment that continues to misrepresent and exploit the work and talents of Asian American performers. Asian women are often sexually exploited and Asian men are made effeminate and impotent; hardly desirable roles in mainstream media. Anyway, Anna May Wong may have started out in roles that were less than ideal, but as she progressed in her career she was able to be pickier about how she chose to represent the Asian diaspora.

The goal of the project is to “compile a collection of profiles that showcase the diversity and many interesting personalities of the Korean American population. We hope that our collective efforts will provide a snapshot of the Korean American community at this point in our history.” It’s been really neat to read about so many different Korean Americans in different places, and also to think about how the intersection of our identities and experiences have all brought us to this website.

All that to say YAY for raising awareness about Asian American children’s books that raise awareness about important Asian Americans, and for projects that interrogate and showcase the complexity of the Korean diaspora!

CFP: Nat’l 3rd Annual Celebration of Latino Children’s Literature Conference

The Universities of Alabama’s School of Library and Information Studies is pleased to announce the National 3rd Annual Celebration of Latino Children’s Literature Conference: Connecting  Cultures & Celebrating Cuentos to be held in Tuscaloosa, AL on April 23-24, 2010. This exclusive conference was created for the purpose of promoting high-quality children’s literature about the Latino cultures and to offer a forum for librarians, educators, researchers, and students to openly discuss strategies for meeting the informational, educational, and literacy needs of Latino children and their families. Featuring nationally-acclaimed Latino literacy scholars and award-winning Latin@ authors and illustrators of children’s books, this Connecting Cultures & Celebrating Cuentos conference is truly an unforgettable experience.

REQUEST FOR PROPOSALS: In keeping with the idea of celebrating Latino children’s literature and creating intercultural connections, we invite poster and program proposals that contribute to and extend existing knowledge in the following areas: Latino children’s literature, bilingual education, Latino family involvement in the school curriculum, Latino cultural literacy, library services to Latino children and their families, literacy programs utilizing Latino children’s literature, educational needs of Latino children, educational opportunities and collaborations with El día de los niños/El día de los libros (Children’s Day/Book Day), Latino children’s responses to culturally-responsive literature, social influences of children’s media on Latino youth, and other related topics. Presentations and posters can share recent research or provide practical suggestions for current or preservice librarians and educators.

PROGRAM PROPOSALS: To submit your program proposal, please provide the following information:  a 250 word (maximum) abstract of your presentation along with the program title;  the name of the program organizer; the names of all presenters and their affiliations along with their preferred contact phone, email, and address; and your preferred presentation day (Friday or Saturday) to conference chair Dr. Jamie Campbell Naidoo at Please be sure to put “program proposal” in your subject heading.

POSTER PROPOSALS: To submit your poster proposal, please provide the following information:  the title of your poster; a 200 word (maximum) abstract of your poster; the subject of your poster (choose Literature/Media Studies, Programs & Services in Libraries, Educational & Literacy Strategies, or Exemplary Programs); your name and affiliation; and your preferred contact phone, email, and address to conference chair Dr. Jamie Campbell Naidoo at Please be sure to put “poster proposal” in your subject heading.

The deadline for proposal submissions is February 19th, 2010 with notification of acceptance by February 28th, 2010. Conference registration begins January 2010. Additional conference information will be available at that time via the conference website:

If you need additional information about the conference, I’ve attached our preliminary save-the-date card and you can also contact me at