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  • A Unique Diaspora?The Case of Adopted Girls from the People's Republic of China
  • Karen Miller-Loessi (bio) and Zeynep Kilic (bio)
Karen Miller-Loessi and Zeynep Kilic
Arizona State University
Karen Miller-Loessi

Karen Miller-Loessi is Associate Professor of Sociology at Arizona State University, Tempe. Her most recent work includes a review essay, "The Chinese Diaspora" (forthcoming in Sociological Inquiry, fall 2002) and a chapter with John N. Parker, "Cross-Cultural Social Psychology," in Handbook of Social Psychology, edited by John De Lamater (Kluwer Plenum, forthcoming 2003). She has published some twenty-two other journal articles and book chapters in the areas of social psychology, gender, and work. She serves on the Editorial Board of Social Psychology Quarterly, and was guest editor of a special issue of Sociological Perspectives on Women in the Workplace in spring 1992. She is currently working on a book on the Chinese adoption phenomenon.

Zeynep Kilic

Zeynep Kilic is a PhD candidate in the Department of Sociology at Arizona State University in Tempe, where she is working on a dissertation about citizenship, questions of belonging, and immigrant loyalties in the era of transnationalism. She has published essays on Turkish women, and on dual citizenship, in Turkish journals. She is also the author of a forthcoming review essay on human rights and the co-author of another forthcoming article on citizenship in the European Union.


1. According to official Chinese government estimates, tens of thousands of Chinese children have been adopted abroad in less than a decade (CCAA, Reception).

2. The Hague Convention on Protection of Children and Cooperation in Respect of Intercountry Adoption, 29 May 1993, Hague Conference on Private International Law (32 I.L.M. 1134 (1993)).

3. Although annual data are nor available for the other countries, Web sites indicate that at least 300 Danish families (Kinaforeningen) and 60 Irish families (International Orphan Aid Ireland) have adopted children from China.

4. The one-child policy allows ethnic minorities in the PRC to have more children than are allowed for Han Chinese families; thus, the abandonment of daughters from non-Han families is less likely.

Works Cited

Anderson, Benedict. Imagined Communities: Reflections on the Origin and Spread of Nationalism. London: Verso, 1983.
Asociacion de Familias Adoptantes en China. Estadisticas [Statistics]. 9 July 2002. <>.
Bartholet, Elizabeth. Family Bonds: Adoption and the Politics of Parenting. Boston: Houghton, 1993.
Bowen, John. "Chinese Language Instruction for Children: Preparing for the Long March." Amy Klatzk in 248-51.
Brown, Jane. "The Importance of Cultural Education." Klatzkin 239-42.
Cecere, Laura A. The Children Can't Wait: China's Emerging Model for Intercountry Adoption. Cambridge, MA: China Seas, 1998.
Chan, Stephen. "What Is This Thing Called a Chinese Diaspora?" Contemporary Review 274 (1999): 81-3.
Chen, Vivia. "No Recipe for Being Chinese-American." Families with Children from China Greater New York Newsletter 6.3 (1999): 17.
China Center for Adoption Affairs. Home page. 9 July 2002. <>.
———. Reception Held by China Center of Adoption Affairs to Celebrate 5th Anniversary of Its Founding. 9 July 2002. <>.
Chow, Cheong. "Chinese School." Klatzkin 236-8.
Cohen, Robin. Global Diasporas: An Introduction. Seattle: U of Washington P, 1997.
Dorow, Sara. When You Were Born in China: A Memory Book for Children Adopted from China. St. Paul, MN: Yeong and Yeong, 1997.
Families with Children from China. Home page. 9 July 2002. <http:/>.
Fancott, Harriet. Adoption News—Dec, 2000. 24 Sept. 2001. <>.
Fleming, Julia. "The Unexpected Benefits of Language." Klatzkin 252-4.
Gilroy, Paul. The Black Atlantic: Modernity and Double Consciousness. Cambridge, MA: Harvard UP, 1993.
Guo Sijin. Speech at the Seminar of the Adoption Organizations of the Four Scandinavian Countries (Excerpts) [9 Oct. 1999], 9 July 2002. <>.
Hall, Stuart. "Cultural Identity and Cinematic Representation." Black British Cultural Studies. Ed. Houston A. Baker et al. Chicago: U of Chicago P, 1996. 210-222.
International Orphan Aid Ireland. Home...


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