Magazine article The Advocate (The national gay & lesbian newsmagazine)

Still Living Dangerously: A New Documentary on Cable's Here Network Notes the Struggle of Gay Rights in Much of the World

Magazine article The Advocate (The national gay & lesbian newsmagazine)

Still Living Dangerously: A New Documentary on Cable's Here Network Notes the Struggle of Gay Rights in Much of the World

Article excerpt

Dangerous Living: Coming Out in the Developing World * Directed by John Scagliotti * Narrated by Janeane Garofalo * Here TV network * Premieres May 11

For gays and lesbians in the Western world, talk of political progress in a conservative-dominated era invariably takes the form of arguing over whether the glass is haft empty or half full. But as Dangerous Living: Coming Out in the Developing World demonstrates, we should consider ourselves lucky to have any glass at all.

Directed by veteran documentarian John Scagliotti (Before Stonewall, After Stonewall) and narrated by Janeane Garofalo, Dangerous Living premieres May 11 on the Here TV network and begins on another May 11, back in 2001. On that date in Cairo, 52 gay men were arrested on the Queen Boat, a popular floating discotheque, and imprisoned for "debauchery"-there being no official law against homosexuality per se in Egypt.

As the film shows, this throwback to the sort of situation common in pre-Stonewall America was part of a widespread backlash in countries as diverse as Jamaica, Honduras, Malaysia, Uganda, Pakistan, Vietnam, Zimbabwe, Namibia, and the Philippines. For as the many highly articulate gays and lesbians of these regions testify, the success of the gay rights movement in the West had by the 1990s come to be regarded as a threat by Third World nationalist movements. Such was the case even in those countries with long-recognized histories of same-sex love visibly reflected in countless sculptures, paintings, literary works, and ancient artifacts. …

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