Year of Graduation


Level of Access

Open Access Thesis

Embargo Period


Department or Program

Asian Studies

First Advisor

Rachel Sturman

Second Advisor

Shu-Chin Tsui


Published narratives about adoptions have typically been told from the perspective of the adopter. In recent years, Asian American writers who are part of the transracial, transcultural, and even transcultural adoptions, have published their narratives and expanded the discourse on adoptions to include the voices of orphans and adoptees. While there are still not many published works by adoptees, more and more writers are coming forward with their own stories separate from their adoptive parents. This honors project is a memoir and a work of nonfiction that examines the author’s experiences as an adoptee from India. It explores the issues of skin color bias (or colorism) in Indian adoption, as well as Indian government policies on inter-country and in-country adoptions. This memoir also delves into the complexities of an adoptive mother-daughter relationship, particularly in the transracial context. The work of non-fiction tells the story of a single white American mother adopting a 10 year old Indian girl to the United States. Written from the adoptee’s perspective, the memoir follows the different points of transitions in both the mother’s and the daughter’s lives and the ensuing challenges, chaos, vulnerabilities, and moments of tenderness, mutual support, care, and love that blooms in their adoptive mother-daughter relationship. This work draws upon narratives of Asian American women writers including Michelle Zauner’s Crying in H-Mart, Nicole Chung’s All You Can Ever Know, and Nishta J. Mehra’s Brown White Black to acknowledge their own voices and give credibility to the adoptee narrative.