Fleasbiting is excited to announce a written debate between Harvard Law Professor Elizabeth Bartholet and Samford University Law Professor (and our own Fleasbiting blogger) David Smolin. The debate will comprise a chapter in the upcoming book, "Intercountry Adoption: Policies, Practices, and Outcomes" edited by Judith L. Gibbons (Saint Louis University) and Karen Smith Rotabi (Virginia Commonwealth University) to be published by Ashgate Publishing in June 2012.
The book can be pre-ordered online for a discount at Ashgate Publishing. Frankly though, at a discounted cost of $108, it is priced more for serious research and university libraries than for personal or public libraries....which is why we're excited to have permission from the publishers to post the debate on-line where we can all read it. I'll get to posting the link in a minute. First things first....
Terms of the Debate:
Professors Bartholet and Smolin were each given the same three questions to answer independently (apart from each other, not knowing what the other's answer would be), and then one opportunity to respond to the other's answers. Strict space limitations were enforced for both answers and responses.
This strictly controlled debate makes clear the two law professors' starkly different perspectives on the law, policies, and facts relevant to intercountry adoption.
I imagine that most readers of this blog will be familiar with Professor Elizabeth Bartholet. She remains one of the more active, vocal, and well-known advocates for intercountry adoption (ICA) Her many writings on intercountryadoption are either cited or else available for free download on her facultyweb page.
Likewise, most readers of this blog are likely familiar with Professor David Smolins' writings on international adoption. Some can be found here on Fleasbiting; but most of Professor Smolin's writings on intercountry adoption are available for free download on his bepress webpage.
David Smolin says about the debate:
The debate illustrates my argument that advocates for ICA, such as Prof. Bartholet, unintentionally undermine ICA by denying and minimizing the abuses and resisting necessary regulations on money, intermediaries, and agency accountability that could reduce those abuses. Some ICA advocates (like Professor Bartholet) also minimize the significance of the losses and difficulties for adoptees of the trans-racial, trans-cultural, and trans-national nature of ICA, as well as the trauma to family and child of the loss of relationship between child and original family. Although purportedly pro-ICA, I think this approach is contributing to its destruction.
By contrast, Prof. Bartholet classifies me with anti-ICA forces whom she sees as destructive of the best interests of children. She perceives ICA as under assault from such forces.
In the midst of this debate are questions about the numbers and characteristics of “unparented” children (or orphans) in “need” of ICA, the extent of abusive practices, the significance and interpretation of the subsidiary principle and of relevant international law, and the nature of interventions short of full adoption.
And so without further ado, here is the link to the debate. It will take you to the bepress site page for the debate. To read the debate, click on the button to the left of the photo that says "download." This will allow you to download the debate file (in pdf form) to your computer where you can read it:
I look forward to comments (I hope respectful even if passionate!) on the debate or the issues it raises.
Elizabeth Bartholet & David Smolin Debate International Adoption
Enjoy! And again, as David said, comments and debate on the issues it raises are welcome. Please post those comments here as there is nowhere to post comments on the bepress site.
"The Debate" between Elizabeth Bartholet and David Smolin, currently pre-published on the internet by permission of the book publisher (see below) at bepress: Selected Works of David Smolin .
"The Debate" by Elizabeth Bartholet and David Smolin, to be a chapter in the upcoming book,
"Intercountry Adoption: Policies, Practices, and Outcomes" edited by Judith L. Gibbons (Saint Louis University) and Karen Smith Rotabi (Virginia Commonwealth University) to be published by Ashgate Publishing in June 2012. The book is to include chapters by the following, many of whom are well known scholars, thinkers, and stakeholders in the field of adoption: Peter Selman; Jonathan Dickens; Kathleen Ja Sook Berquist; Karen Smith Rotabi; Cristina Nedelcu and Victor Groza; Kay Johnson; Kelley McCreery Bunkers and Victor Groza; Kelley McCreery Bunkers, Karen Smith Rotabi, and Benyam Dawit Mezmur; Femmie Juffer and Marinus H. van Ijzendoom; Laurie C. Miller; Monica Dalen; Elizabeth Bartholet and David Smolin; Judith L. Gibbons and Karen Smith Rotabi; Thomas M. Crea; Jesus Palacios; Rhoda Scherman; Hollee McGinnis; and Judith L. Gibbons and Karen Smith Rotabi. The book is can be ordered online for a discount at Ashgate Publishing. Frankly though, at a discounted price of $108, it is priced more for serious research and university libraries than for personal or public libraries.