Openness in adoption: challenging the narrative of historical progress

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    8 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    One significant change in adoption practice that has occurred over the last four decades is the shift away from an expectation of confidentiality towards an expectation of openness in adoption. Openness is typically conceived in terms of the level of contact between adoptive and birth families following adoption or the extent to which adoption is openly discussed within the adoptive family. While these shifts in practice have generated controversy, they are largely supported by research evidence and have become a feature of contemporary adoptive family life. As a result, the narrative that has emerged in relation to openness in adoption is one of historical progress. In this paper, I argue that the lived reality of adoption is less straightforward than this narrative suggests. An analysis of the social and cultural context in which adoption operates suggests instead that the persistent feature of adoption throughout this historical period of increasing openness can be more accurately described as a state of enduring ambiguity regarding the nature of post-adoption relationships. The paper highlights the potentially damaging consequences of overlooking this aspect of adoptive family life and comments on the role of policy in shaping openness in adoption.
    LanguageEnglish
    Pages85-93
    Number of pages9
    JournalChild and Family Social Work
    Volume21
    Issue number1
    Early online date13 Nov 2013
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 15 Jan 2016

    Fingerprint

    narrative
    Confidentiality
    Parturition
    Research
    contact
    evidence

    Keywords

    • adoption
    • contact
    • reunification
    • social policy
    • openness
    • adoptive kniship
    • narrative

    Cite this

    @article{e97eb1c47d8945c4b439409e0344902c,
    title = "Openness in adoption: challenging the narrative of historical progress",
    abstract = "One significant change in adoption practice that has occurred over the last four decades is the shift away from an expectation of confidentiality towards an expectation of openness in adoption. Openness is typically conceived in terms of the level of contact between adoptive and birth families following adoption or the extent to which adoption is openly discussed within the adoptive family. While these shifts in practice have generated controversy, they are largely supported by research evidence and have become a feature of contemporary adoptive family life. As a result, the narrative that has emerged in relation to openness in adoption is one of historical progress. In this paper, I argue that the lived reality of adoption is less straightforward than this narrative suggests. An analysis of the social and cultural context in which adoption operates suggests instead that the persistent feature of adoption throughout this historical period of increasing openness can be more accurately described as a state of enduring ambiguity regarding the nature of post-adoption relationships. The paper highlights the potentially damaging consequences of overlooking this aspect of adoptive family life and comments on the role of policy in shaping openness in adoption.",
    keywords = "adoption, contact, reunification, social policy, openness, adoptive kniship, narrative",
    author = "Christine Jones",
    note = "This is the peer reviewed version of the following article: Jones, C. (2016). Openness in adoption: Challenging the narrative of historical progress. Child and Family Social Work, 21(1), 85-93., which has been published in final form at https://dx.doi.org/10.1111/cfs.12113. This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance with Wiley Terms and Conditions for Self-Archiving",
    year = "2016",
    month = "1",
    day = "15",
    doi = "10.1111/cfs.12113",
    language = "English",
    volume = "21",
    pages = "85--93",
    journal = "Child & Family Social Work",
    issn = "1356-7500",
    number = "1",

    }

    Openness in adoption : challenging the narrative of historical progress. / Jones, Christine.

    In: Child and Family Social Work, Vol. 21, No. 1, 15.01.2016, p. 85-93.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    TY - JOUR

    T1 - Openness in adoption

    T2 - Child & Family Social Work

    AU - Jones, Christine

    N1 - This is the peer reviewed version of the following article: Jones, C. (2016). Openness in adoption: Challenging the narrative of historical progress. Child and Family Social Work, 21(1), 85-93., which has been published in final form at https://dx.doi.org/10.1111/cfs.12113. This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance with Wiley Terms and Conditions for Self-Archiving

    PY - 2016/1/15

    Y1 - 2016/1/15

    N2 - One significant change in adoption practice that has occurred over the last four decades is the shift away from an expectation of confidentiality towards an expectation of openness in adoption. Openness is typically conceived in terms of the level of contact between adoptive and birth families following adoption or the extent to which adoption is openly discussed within the adoptive family. While these shifts in practice have generated controversy, they are largely supported by research evidence and have become a feature of contemporary adoptive family life. As a result, the narrative that has emerged in relation to openness in adoption is one of historical progress. In this paper, I argue that the lived reality of adoption is less straightforward than this narrative suggests. An analysis of the social and cultural context in which adoption operates suggests instead that the persistent feature of adoption throughout this historical period of increasing openness can be more accurately described as a state of enduring ambiguity regarding the nature of post-adoption relationships. The paper highlights the potentially damaging consequences of overlooking this aspect of adoptive family life and comments on the role of policy in shaping openness in adoption.

    AB - One significant change in adoption practice that has occurred over the last four decades is the shift away from an expectation of confidentiality towards an expectation of openness in adoption. Openness is typically conceived in terms of the level of contact between adoptive and birth families following adoption or the extent to which adoption is openly discussed within the adoptive family. While these shifts in practice have generated controversy, they are largely supported by research evidence and have become a feature of contemporary adoptive family life. As a result, the narrative that has emerged in relation to openness in adoption is one of historical progress. In this paper, I argue that the lived reality of adoption is less straightforward than this narrative suggests. An analysis of the social and cultural context in which adoption operates suggests instead that the persistent feature of adoption throughout this historical period of increasing openness can be more accurately described as a state of enduring ambiguity regarding the nature of post-adoption relationships. The paper highlights the potentially damaging consequences of overlooking this aspect of adoptive family life and comments on the role of policy in shaping openness in adoption.

    KW - adoption

    KW - contact

    KW - reunification

    KW - social policy

    KW - openness

    KW - adoptive kniship

    KW - narrative

    U2 - 10.1111/cfs.12113

    DO - 10.1111/cfs.12113

    M3 - Article

    VL - 21

    SP - 85

    EP - 93

    JO - Child & Family Social Work

    JF - Child & Family Social Work

    SN - 1356-7500

    IS - 1

    ER -