Intercountry Adoption: A Multinational Perspective

Intercountry Adoption: A Multinational Perspective

Intercountry Adoption: A Multinational Perspective

Intercountry Adoption: A Multinational Perspective


This volume's contributors describe the experiences of foreign born adoptees and their families in such countries as the United States, Canada, Norway, West Germany, Denmark, the Netherlands, and Israel. They provide a brief history of intercountry adoption; specify rules and procedures employed in various countries; and evaluate pros and cons in the seven nations. The contributors discuss each country's formal statutes on transracial and intercountry adoption, and describe the organizations and/or social movements advocating such adoptions as well as those opposing them. Altstein and Simon conclude with a summary based on case studies on the successes and failures of intercountry adoption.


Howard altstein
rita J. simon

This book describes the experiences of foreign-born adoptees and their families in seven societies spread across three continents. It also provides a brief history of intercountry adoption (ICA), specifies the rules and procedures for ica in different societies, and evaluates the pros and cons, the successes and failures of ica in each of the seven nations.

Ica began primarily as a North American philanthropic response to the devastation of Europe in World War II that resulted in thousands of orphaned children. When the European continent was rebuilt and its economy stabilized, the problem of orphaned children was basically solved. But a revitalized economy, coupled with a reduction in Europe's male population (again a result of World War II), led to an increased rate of childlessness. Western societies then turned to Third-World countries with high birth rates for a solution to the dearth of healthy infants in the West.

Western interest in ica in the 1980s, however, is a far cry from its interest following World War ii. in the mid-1940s, Western countries were interested in ica as a solution to the problem of parentless children. By the 1980s, their interest was sparked primarily by the needs of childless couples. the increase in the number of childless Western couples is the result of a combination of factors, including a declining birth rate, a rise in the level of infertility, and the widespread use of readily available contraceptives.

Historical perspective

Most writers date the popularization of adoption with the Pharaoh's daughter snatching Moses from the bulrushes of the Nile, although some would argue that Moses was actually a foster child in that he lived . . .

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