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Construction, Protection and Reinforcement of Intimacy Frontiers in Foster Care in Russia

Ekaterina Pereprosova

Research Framework: The article questions the construction, protection and reinforcement of intimacy frontiers in Russian foster families according to the type of placement.

Objectives: It aims at analysing these processes as resulting from communication between three functional systems: foster family, institutional actors and biological family. In the heart of this communication lies the meaning given to fostering by different actors as well as recent injunctions of the child welfare social policies promoting professionalization of family placement and a bigger responsabilisation of the biological family.

Methodology: The analysis is based on the stories told by four foster mothers which were collected during the fieldwork conducted during the first year of the author’s PhD.

Results: The article demonstrates that the tendencies to protect, reinforce and outline the intimacy frontiers vary in accordance with the type of placement which, in its turn, tend to depend on the foster parents’ socialisation milieu, their expectations about this activity as well as the profiles of available/desirable children.

Conclusions: The studied cases give us an insight into the analysis of electivity of kinship ties and illustrate the concept of the relational family by de Singly as chosen and not statutory defined ties.

Contribution: The article contributes to the childhood and kinship studies.