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Performing adoption, translating the self: Postmodern quest or diasporic inversion?

Durey, J. (2005) Performing adoption, translating the self: Postmodern quest or diasporic inversion? IM: Interactive Media, 1 .

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In contemporary ‘Western’ culture, ‘reunion’ following the silences of ‘closed’ / cross cultural adoption, provides an emotional, critical and performative site for examining ruptures within identity formation, and the problematics of ‘family’ and ‘belonging’ when an insider /outsider dichotomy is assumed. Through story, I reflect on the process of tracing and reconnecting with my birthmother in Llanelli, and my father’s family, in North Wales – a family who are ‘Welsh speakers’, members of Plaid Cymru, and who, for generations have worked on the Penhryn slate quarries near Bethesda. This piece of performative writing, engages with a contingent yet ambiguous process of articulating the ‘self’ across discontinuous and dispersed identities. I draw on my praxis through the Welsh word ‘Cyfrwng’ (trans.‘medium / a means of / communication with / between’), to reflect on the experience of creating and presenting installation works in Australia, an ‘(im)placement’ project in Wales, and other significant ‘events’ - as autoethnographic performance, an ‘insurgent act’ of (re)storying, and means of cultural translation.

Item Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation(s): School of Social Sciences and Humanities
Publisher: National Academy of Screen and Sound
Copyright: © IM/NASS 2005
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