The Land of Gazillion Adoptees Podcast with Lisa Marie Rollins…Great conversation with Lisa Marie, hosted by Kevin Ost-Vollmers. Lisa is an African-American adoptee, and in addition to being a PhD student, is an artist, playwright and adoptee activist. In this podcast she shares her journey in exploring her identity and theorizing on adoption and the African-American adoptee diaspora.
The closing of the Chicago-based group Black Women for Reproductive Justice. This ground-breaking activist and education group was at the forefront of the reproductive justice movement, and it will be a huge loss to the community. As co-founder Toni Bond Leonard writes of their 15 year legacy:
The work of BWRJ has truly been remarkable. It has made important contributions to the lives of thousands of Black women over the past 15 years. We have been allies where possible and a voice to challenge the conscience of the overall movement, when necessary. We have provided vital reproductive and sexual health education that has literally changed the lives of so many Black women. Ours has been a voice that has remained constant in demanding that Black women must not only be at the table, but key stakeholders in shaping the table.
Sometimes, our position has been to our own detriment as there were times where funders wanted us to go in one direction with our work and we instead, decided do what we know works to move the hearts and minds of progressive folk in the Black community – providing life-changing reproductive and sexual health information to women in the communities so they become empowered to take charge of their bodies and lives.
I firmly believe that adoption as an institution sits right in the intersections of race, class, gender, and sexuality, and therefore is an important issue in the reproductive justice movement. Groups like BWRJ have addressed this head-on by exploring the dynamics of race, class, gender, and sexuality in the African-American community, and proving opportunities for empowerment and change.
The Adoption Access Network is back up and running…this is one of the few online resources for pregnant people who are looking for information about adoption that strives to be balanced and open (not casting adoption as a “life-saving” alternative to abortion, but rather just another option).
Somewhere Between: a new documentary about Chinese adoptees in the United States, directed by Linda Goldstein Knowlton, an adoptive mother. Profiling several Chinese adopted teens who grew up in the U.S., this film explores race and culture among this wave of adoptees, some 150,000 strong around the world, 80,000 in the U.S. alone.