Carleton's Kids: The Papua New Guinean Children of D. Carleton Gajdusek

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Spark, Ceridwen (2009) Carleton's Kids: The Papua New Guinean Children of D. Carleton Gajdusek. Journal of Pacific History, 44 (1). pp. 1-19. ISSN 0022-3344 (print) 1469-9605 (online)


Over his lifetime, the medical researcher and Nobel Prize winner Carleton Gajdusek ‘adopted’ 38 children from Papua New Guinea and Micronesia who came to live at his home in the US and were schooled at Gajdusek's expense. Drawing on interviews with ten of the now adult ‘adoptees’ living in PNG, other informants, and published and unpublished documentary sources, this paper reflects on the children's experience of family life in Gajdusek's home and their subsequent return to PNG. The discussion highlights and challenges assumptions implicit in common Western concepts of family.

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Item type Article
DOI 10.1080/00223340902900746
Official URL
Subjects Historical > FOR Classification > 1601 Anthropology
Current > Division/Research > Other
Keywords ResPubID21995, Carleton Gajdusek's autobiography, Carleton's kids, children's experience, family life, Gajdusek’s home
Citations in Scopus 2 - View on Scopus
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