07 May 2008

More foreign homophobia for Sarah

In my Writing for Social Change class, I've now been asked to write a scene either (1) from the POV of someone completely different from me, or (2) from Sarah's POV, but interacting with someone very different from her. My original plan was to write from a Moonie POV, but I'd rather write about Sarah...

Then I found myself checking my frequent flier miles after my Indiana visit, and found that Sarah's airline now plans to fly to Dubai and Moscow, as if Kuwait (and Seoul and San Salvador) were not enough homophobic destinations for Sarah to serve already. (Do Kuwaitis even allow female flight attendants?)

It looks like I may have to write a scene where Sarah's patience is really tested by a hostile crowd of passengers, as she heads for a hellhole of a destination. I've already done it on the Seoul route, so I'll look for another destination this time. The key is for Sarah to keep her composure and continue working, which will be extremely difficult, and which could make or break her career.

The challenge here will be to accurately reflect the homophobia and machismo of the destination culture, without turning anything into a stereotype. It'll be a tall order for me. I'll probably go for either Guatemala City or San Salvador, as those cities are served from California, where Sarah is based, whereas Europe and Middle East are primarily served from Washington-Dulles. I also know Central American homophobia much better than Russian or Arabic ones, so that should help too.

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