Almost The Same, But Not Quite: Mimicry, Mockery and Menace in Swedish Transracial Adoption Narratives

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Almost The Same, But Not Quite: Mimicry, Mockery and Menace in Swedish Transracial Adoption Narratives

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Publication 2-year master student thesis
Title Almost The Same, But Not Quite: Mimicry, Mockery and Menace in Swedish Transracial Adoption Narratives
Author(s) Wyver, Richey
Date 2016
English abstract
This study examines the role and implications of mimicry (Bhabha, 1994) and colonial trans- lation (Young, 2003) in Swedish adoption narratives. Through a deconstructive narrative analysis of three Swedish adoption texts: Längtansbarnen: Adoptivförädrar berättar [The Longed for/Longing Children: Adoptive parents tell their story] (Weigl, 1997), Adoption: Banden som gör oss till familj [Adoption: the ties that make us a family] (Juusela, 2010), and Gul Utanpå [Yellow on the Outside] (Lundberg, 2013); the study explores how mimicry manifests itself in adoption narratives, the process of the translation of the adoptee into a mimic Swede, and how the transnational/-racial adoptee as a mimic poses a threat, as mimicry turns to menace. The study finds that mimicry emerges as a process, where the adoptee is first desired as a body of difference that can become an almost the same Swede, a mimic Swede, while keeping an almost difference. A dual translation process takes place where the adoptee’s body is translated from a body of a difference that is total into a mimic Swede, while a version of Swedishness is translated onto the body. As a mimic, the adoptee communicates their (almost) sameness through an excessive, but limited version of Swedishness, while disavowing their difference. However, their difference is still visible, and continuously communicated through (mis)recognition by others. The adoptee’s mimicry is prone to turn into menace, where they pose a threat to the identity of the white Swede and meanings of white Swedishness. Key Words: Transnational/-racial Adoption; Mimicry; Colonial Translation; Deconstructive Narrative Analysis; Sweden
Publisher Malmö högskola/Kultur och samhälle
Pages 52
Language eng (iso)
Subject(s) Sweden
International adoption
Colonial Mimicry
Postcolonial Theory
Transnational/-racial adoption
Narrative Analysis
Colonial Translation
Bhabha
Handle http://hdl.handle.net/2043/20771 (link to this page)

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