As the first Monday of the diet approached, I wrestled with my conscience. Wasn't this just a little-Englander gesture against "cultural imperialism" in our shiny new global world? Then I remembered writing my play Some Explicit Polaroids. In it there are several scenes set on an Aids ward: the Russian toyboy Victor sees his lover Tim die. These scenes were almost autobiographical for me. I wanted to write honestly from my own life. Instead, the Aids plays of Tony Kushner and Larry Kramer, and the films Philadelphia and Longtime Companion, came rushing towards me. I found my characters talking in mid-Atlantic accents; suddenly there were Hugs and Learning and Meryl Streep sitting on the bed. I was angry, furious with America for colonising my experience of Aids. I had to rip up draft after draft of those scenes until I could get something that was free of the American shadow.More in The Guardian.
Monday, September 19, 2005
Guild member Mark Ravenhill found himself consuming almost exclusively American culture. Could he survive a month without it?