[Web Exclusive] Interview with Jane Jeong Trenka: Minorities within Minorities

  • onJune 28, 2019
  • Vol.44 Summer 2019
  • byJane Jeong Trenka


Language: English (with  Korean subtitles)


Jane Jeong Trenka is an internationally adopted Korean and the author of two memoirs, The Language of Blood: A Memoir (2003) (Korean title: 피의 언어 (2005)) and Fugitive Visions: An Adoptee’s Return to Korea (2009) (Korean title: 덧 없는 환영들 (2013)). Together with Sun Yung Shin and Julia Chinyere Oparah, she co-edited the anthology Outsiders Within: Writing on Transracial Adoption (2006) (Korean title: 인종간 입양의 사회학 (2012). Trenka’s work on overseas adoption been cited for several prizes, most recently an Amnesty International Media Award in 2017 for the series “65 Years of Overseas Adoption,” (20회 국제앰네스티 언론상, ‘한국 해외입양 65년’) published in the online newspaper Pressian  together with Jeon Hong Kihye and Dr. Lee Kyung Eun. She and her work have also been cited for awards from Center for Children, Law and Ethics at Cumberland School of Law, Samford University; the Korean Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism; the Publication Industry Promotion Agency of Korea; the Korea Publication Ethics Commission; the Minnesota State Arts Board; the Loft-McKnight Foundation; the Loft Literary Center; Barnes & Noble Bookstore, and others. Her writing is taught in widely in American universities, and has been included in the Contemporary Period volume of the The Heath Anthology of American Literature.
As an activist, Trenka was instrumental in revising Korea's Special Adoption Law in 2011 and continues to work on child rights and adoption-related issues in Korea. Trenka majored in public policy at the Graduate School of Public Administration at Seoul National University, writing her thesis on adoption law.