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In-person Event: RELINQUISHED by Gretchen Sisson

We are thrilled to celebrate the release of Relinquished: The Politics of Adoption and the Privilege of American Motherhood by Gretchen Sisson! For this event, Gretchen will be joined in conversation by Jessamine Chan! 

Please note: Pre-registration for this event is required. By pre-registering, you are verifying that you are fully vaccinated and will wear a mask throughout the entirety of the event, per W&CF's Covid-19 policy. 

REGISTER FOR THIS EVENT HERE!

A powerful decade-long study of adoption in the age of Roe, revealing the grief of the American mothers for whom the choice to parent was never real

Adoption has always been viewed as a beloved institution for building families, as well as a mutually agreeable common ground in the abortion debate, but little attention has been paid to the lives of mothers who relinquish infants for private adoption. Relinquished reveals adoption to be a path of constrained choice for those for whom abortion is inaccessible, or for whom parenthood is untenable. The stories of relinquishing mothers are stories about our country's refusal to care for families at the most basic level, and to instead embrace an individual, private solution to a large-scale, social problem.

With the recent decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Organization revoking abortion protections, we are in a political moment in which adoption is, increasingly, being revealed as an institution devoted to separating families and policing parenthood under the guise of feel-good family-building. Rooted in a long-term study, Relinquished features the in-depth testimonies of American mothers who placed their children for domestic adoption. The voices of these women are powerful and heartrending; they deserve to be heard.

Gretchen Sisson, Ph.D., is a qualitative sociologist studying abortion and adoption at Advancing New Standards in Reproductive Health (ANSIRH) in the Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology, and Reproductive Sciences at University of California, San Francisco. Her research was cited in the Supreme Court’s dissent in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization and has been covered in The Washington PostThe NationAll Things Considered and Consider ThisNew York MagazineVOX, and other outlets.

Jessamine Chan is the author of The School for Good Mothers, which was a New York Times bestseller, a Read with Jenna/TODAY Show Book Club pick, a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle John Leonard Prize, and one of Barack Obama’s Favorite Books of 2022. Translations in twenty languages have been published or are forthcoming. She lives in Chicago with her family.

Accessibility: This event is hosted at the bookstore, which is a wheelchair accessible space. Masks are required. Seating is on a first-come, first-serve basis. To request ASL interpretation for this event, please email events@womenandchildrenfirst.com by no later than 14 days before the event. For other questions or access needs, please email events@womenandchildrenfirst.com.

Event date: 
Thursday, May 30, 2024 - 7:00pm
Event address: 
Women and Children First
5233 N. Clark St.
Chicago, IL 60640
Relinquished: The Politics of Adoption and the Privilege of American Motherhood By Gretchen Sisson Cover Image
$29.00
ISBN: 9781250286772
Availability: On our shelves recently
Published: St. Martin's Press - February 27th, 2024