Presentation and Discussion: Black GI Children in Post-World War II Europe, 29.06.2021, virtual space

Black German Heritage & Research Association (Web)
Time: Tue, 29.06.2021, 7:30 PM CEST
Vennue: virtual space, via Zoom (tba)
A special edition of the journal „zeitgeschichte“ with a focus on „Black GI Children in Post-World War II Europe“ was recently published. The five authors examined the social and official treatment of the Black GI children and their mothers in the USA, the UK, West Germany, and Austria, exploring their experiences and self-conceptions and discussing/analyzing issues including their placement in homes, the strategy of youth welfare agencies of putting these children up for adoption abroad, and how the children were received in segregated America in the 1940s and 1950s.
This panel will not only present the publication but also elaborate on its origins. The authors will dicuss, partly with each other and partly with the audience, various aspects of the research on which their individual contributions were based. Read more … (Web)

  • Lucy Bland (Cambridge)
  • Kelly Condit-Shrestha (Minnesota)
  • Azziza B. Malanda (Hamburg/Köln)
  • Philipp Rohrbach (Vienna)

zeitgeschichte 1/2021, ed. by Ingrid Bauer and Philipp Rohrbach (Web)
This volume addresses an issue that was until recently taboo: children fathered by Black American GIs who were stationed in Europe during and after World War II and whose mothers were local citizens. They were born into societies that defined themselves as White and rejected this extremely visible portion of the so-called occupation children. Black and White are in this volume not (only) understood as descriptions of skin color, but above all as social constructs and political categories with racist attributions and effects. The authors examine the manner in which these mixed-race children and their mothers were treated by their societies and the respective authorities; they assess the experiences and self-understandings of the individuals affected; they discuss their institutionalization and the strategy practiced by the youth welfare agencies of giving these children up for adoption abroad; and finally they highlight how African American couples in the USA interpreted the adoption of these mixed-race children from Europe as an act of Black resistance against White supremacy.