Archives of origins. Traces and narrative (dis)continuities in the archives of France’s child welfare system (France, 1995–2015)

By Agnès Martial


Based on an investigation of France’s child welfare services, this article analyzes the “traces” left behind in the files of children whose parents were unknown or who had been given up for adoption. The way in which administrative documents, letters, photographs, or items were dealt with sheds light on the perception of relationships in situations of adoption, highlighting a new aspect of contemporary multiparenthood.


  • Kinship
  • Abandonment
  • Adoption
  • Origins
  • Archives
Go to the article on