2018 Adoption Conference

In 2018, The Adoption Initiative Conference will be teaming up with the Alliance for the Study of Adoption in Culture, and will hosting a series of panels at their upcoming Seventh Biennial Conference taking place 18–20 October 2018 in Oakland, California, USA at the Oakland Marriott City Center. This is a unique opportunity to bring the two organizations together in terms of their members, as well as to combine the unique focus each brings to the discussions and debates concerning adoption. The theme of the conference is Formations: Thinking Kinship through Adoption, and aims to promote interdisciplinary culture-based scholarship and creative practices that address old and new formations of kinship through the lens of adoption.

The conference aims to expand current knowledge of the experience, institution, and cultural representation of adoption and kinship. The papers and panels at the conference have been designed to encourage discussion of kinship formations that adoptees, birth/first parents, and adoptive kin create and in which they participate; that creative artists engage across genres; that social workers, lawyers, and other practitioners address; that activists define and engage; and that scholars in fields including history, anthropology, philosophy, sociology, law, religious studies, literary studies, art historical studies, political science, psychology, and medical humanities analyze and critique. The conference advocates community among people positioned differently with regard to adoption because of their life experience, profession, and/or discipline.

The goal of the sessions, as always, is to present thought-provoking themes relevant to the training of mental-health professionals in the field. It further focuses on the personal growth and deeper understanding of individuals, families, and communities affected by adoption. A particular focus that AI brings to the table is on topics that illustrate the ways in which adoption is mythologized, portrayed, and marketed, often in direct contrast to how it is experienced, processed, and lived. We are very excited to be working with ASAC on this conference, and look forward to the synergies that will be created and fostered there as our respective members mix and mingle. We are also hoping this will allow our members who previously might not have been able to join us in the New York City area to attend and participate. AIC is hoping to be back in the New York City area in 2020, for a 20-year anniversary celebration.

Thank you and we are greatly looking forward to seeing you in October!