Adoption Books: Research & Reference

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Editor's Picks

For the student of history, social scientist, and others looking for statistics, studies, and research materials, these books are the answer. From its beginnings which pre-date written history to the present, scholars have explored and examined this social phenomenon we know as adoption, and this wealth of knowledge is available to us.

1) Ethics in American Adoption
This book, by child advocate L. Anne Babb, Ph.D., is based on comprehensive research of ethics in adoption practices, and proposes standards considered long overdue in the industry.

2) Adoption and Ethics
This is one of a four volume series on adoption and ethics by Madelyn Freundlich, former executive director of the Evan B. Donaldson Adoption Institute. The series seeks to identify areas in question and propose solutions.

3) Family Matters: Secrecy and Disclosure in the History of Adoption
Exploring the evolution of secrecy and disclosure in adoption from colonial days to the present, E. Wayne Carp looks at changing attitudes about blood ties, illegitimacy, and family psychology. Surprisingly easy to read.

4) Adoption Fact Book III
The latest in this series from the National Council for Adoption, the conservative voice for adoption. The book contains tables of statistics (based on voluntary participation in the private sector), charts, and articles from professionals dealing with every aspect of adoption and adoptive families.

5) Nobody’s Children
Elizabeth Bartolet takes a hard look at foster care, family reunification, and adoption. She sympathizes with disturbed families but sees children’s futures in stable environments as more important than endless efforts to keep damaged families together.

6) Openness in Adoption: Exploring Family Connections
Results of a long-term study by Drs. Ruth McRoy and Harold D. Grotevant, which followed 720 adoptive families, birth parents, and adoptees to the age of 12. Published in 1998.

7) The Encyclopedia of Adoption
A comprehensive reference book that covers not only adoption (domestic and international with specific country references), but also history, law, and issues such as divorce, foster care, permanency options, and appendices with statistical trends.

8) Wake Up Little Susie
This study from Ricky Solinger offers a biting look at unwed pregnancy in the 50’s and 60’s and the pressure on white women to surrender their children for adoption. A backdrop to modern adoption practices.

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