Sudbury's birth parents are Nigerian (Igbo) and English; she was adopted transracially when six months old. She was born in England but now lives in the USA, where she is a visiting assistant professor at Mills College in ethnic studies.
Her interests extend to class, gender, sexuality and diaspora studies, and to transracial adoption (she is a founder member of Sankofa, the San Francisco Bay area association of transracial adoptees, and a member of ATRAP, the UK association of transracial adoptees) and to helping other adoptees to trace (she has traced her own birth parents and five siblings).
She is publishing a collection of transracial adoptees' autobiographical writings, Voices from the Borderlands, and a study of Black women's political organizations, titled Other Kinds of Dreams.
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