Edited Collection: The Spirit of Adoption

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Collection: Spirit of Adoption--Essays on Adoption, Religion, Faith, and more

Call for Submissions
Collection: The Spirit of Adoption: Writers on Religion, Adoption, Faith, and More

We are seeking submissions for a new collection tentatively titled The Spirit of Adoption: Writers on Religion, Adoption, Faith, and More. We are especially interested in narratives from adoptees and birth parents, as this collection will feature stories by adoptees, birth parents, and adoptive parents who have considered the complex relationship between religion and adoption, and who have tried to make meaning of adoption through the lens of their own faith perspectives.

Submissions for this collection should be primarily narrative-driven rather than how-to: we are not looking for devotionals about how adoption was a "God Thing," or for overly preachy polemics about why adoption saves children from "heathen" faiths. Instead, we seek true stories that show how people think about adoption and its relationship to religion; how adoption has changed their understanding of God's nature; how adoption has challenged and shaped their own faith, Christian or otherwise.

Although writers should rely on their personal experiences, they might consider these potential questions:

• How do you understand the blessing of adoption in light of the losses experienced by first families and children? How do you understand God in light of these losses?

• How does adoption operate in a liminal position between justice (that the birth family would be able to keep the child and the practices that result in so many orphans worldwide end) and mercy (that an adoptive family would be able to enjoy the blessings of a child/children)?

• How do you contend with the sense that adopted children may have embraced a different faith, were it not for their adoption? What does that say about the nature of religious belief, thought, and practice?

• Many religions condemn the woman who is pregnant out-of-wedlock, but ignore the man's participation. How does socio-religious focus on female fault affect understanding of birth mothers? How does that father-dismissal affect understanding of birth fathers? How does this broken first-family image work itself out in the lives and relationships of adult adoptees?

Essays should follow the criteria of any good narrative, having a strong beginning, middle, and end; showing, rather than telling; drawing the reader into the experiences of the writer; focusing on the individual as a means of understanding the universal. We seek tightly-written essays between 1,000-5,000 words, though shorter essays might be considered. Our MS is due to the publisher by August 1, 2013.

DEADLINE: May 1, 2013

FORMAT AND SUBMITTING: Essays should be typed and double-spaced. Please make sure to include your name, address, and phone number on the first page; on subsequent pages, include your name and pagination. When submitting electronically, please include a short biography. Submissions should be sent to any of the three editors below.