Journalist Gabrielle Glaser will be in conversation with author Benilde Little
about her new book American Baby: A Mother, A Child and the Shadow History of Adoption
Join MPL's live webcast of our popular series featuring journalist Gabrielle Glaser in conversation with author and Montclair native Benilde Little about the underbelly of the American adoption industry, told through one child's story. The Open Book / Open Mind series is presented by the Montclair Public Library through the generous financial support of The Montclair Public Library Foundation, The Montclair Foundation, and The Investors Foundation.
The shocking truth about postwar adoption in America, told through the bittersweet story of one teenager, the son she was forced to relinquish, and their search to find each other.
During the Baby Boom in 1960s America, women were encouraged to stay home and raise large families, but sex and childbirth were taboo subjects. Premarital sex was common, but birth control was hard to get and abortion was illegal. In 1961, sixteen-year-old Margaret Erle fell in love and became pregnant. Her enraged family sent her to a maternity home, and after she gave birth, she wasn't even allowed her to hold her own son. Social workers threatened her with jail until she signed away her parental rights. Her son vanished, his whereabouts and new identity known only to an adoption agency that would never share the slightest detail about his fate.