June 23rd, 2009

Male Prostitutes in Victorian England--Price

So I have this male prostitute, living in Whitechapel during the time of the Jack the Ripper murders (late 1888). He's in his mid- to late twenties, healthy, and relatively handsome. He's just spent the evening in the company of a young man from Scotland Yard, who, being inexperienced in the hiring of prostitutes, now has no idea what to pay him. Unfortunately, neither do I.

The idea is for the flustered punter to ridiculously overpay him, and for the prostitute to gently point out what the going rate is. Below the cut are a couple of questions concerning prices.

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Googled terms: Many variations on 1880s, England, male prostitution, and price/cost/rate. I found a really informative article on male prostitution in a 1980s volume of the Journal of Homosexuality, but it didn't discuss what they might charge.

I'd be very grateful for any input. Thanks!

Debilitating Diseases in Children (1970s-1980s)

I'm trying to figure out what disease to use for a child character in my story. The girl in question is born in 1976 in the US to a white, middle class family. I need a disease that is not fatal (or, at least, not fatal until she is at least a teenager), non-infectious, and that would leave her either bedridden or unable to walk, and relying on the care of her overbearing mother, but mentally sound and intelligent. The girl needs to be able to be cared for at home, but occasional emergency hospital stays are fine.

I've Googled:
- debilitating diseases
- debilitating diseases in children
- bedridden diseases
- crippling diseases
- various mixtures w/ added relevant dates

I've considered cystic fibrosis, or perhaps spinal meningitis. Would either of these work, or does anyone have any better ideas? Thank you in advance.

(I think I chose the correct tags, but mods, please let me know if I choose poorly).
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Coma recovery + amnesia + therapy / quick-acting (or hide-able) fatal disease (in Japan)

All questions take place in Japan, most likely around Tokyo. The time frame is in the near future, except for one question which I'll specify when it comes up.

Google search terms: "coma recovery" "amnesia" "art therapy", as well as looking through tags on this community.

1. I have a character, A., who's woken up recently from a coma that lasted about six months. What sort of follow-up appointments would she be required to have once she gets out of the hospital, and how frequently? If it's relevant, her father was abusive (though that's not the cause of her coma), and she's now going to school again thanks to someone else putting up the money for her. In addition, what sort of psychotherapy would she be getting? I'm thinking that art therapy might be appropriate, since she's fairly good at drawing. Would that be available to her in this place and time?

2. A. has some memory loss as a result of things that happened to her mind during the coma (her mind was trapped somewhere else during the duration of the coma). Is it possible for her to regain memories via external prompting, and how quickly is it likely to happen? I'm thinking it would be something similar to retrograde amnesia, but I'm not sure, it could just be classified as repression.

3. A.'s mother died when she was young (I'm thinking somewhere between the years 2000 and 2003). I'm trying to come up with a disease that isn't cancer that would kill someone quickly, or that someone could hide long enough until it resurfaced. I would like, if all possible, for the mother to remain vaguely coherent until she dies, albeit confined to a hospital bed.

(Short, relevant note: The reason I would prefer it not to be cancer is because I'm having difficulties with reading articles about cancer, due to a family member going through treatment right now.)

Thank you very much!

Druids/Celts Attitudes Toward Homosexuality

Hey all! I am doing a Beauty and the Beast retelling, and my enchantress makes her spell gender-specific. As in, she says "you won't be free until you can love someone and she loves you back." (Yes, I am snatching the whole "lovey schmoopy' spell from Disney, a little bit, but that's where I got this whole idea. hopefully, in the grand scheme of things, the blatant Disneyfication will recede beneath the magnificence and tragedy of the rest of the story; but I digress).

At any rate. My current vague idea of a plot is that the story is set in Ireland, and the beast is (probably, depending on how much research I care to do) a Hiberno-Norman lord. He is cursed by an Irish person for some as-yet-to-be-determined evil deed, with a (possibly unintentionally) gender-specific curse.

What this preamable has led to is my question, finally. I am wondering about attitudes towards homosexuality in 12th century Ireland, preferably the attitudes of the Irish people, and not the Normans. To make things even more complicated, I am thinking of having the Beast transformed through druidic magic, so on top of 12th century Irish views on homosexuality, any ancient druidic views on homosexuality would help too.

I'm not sure if any of this will be directly important to the story in any way, but I'd like some background. Would the person doing the curse just automatically assume the beast would fall in love with a woman, and therefore not really notice when they said "she must fall in love with you too," or would they maybe sort of think that there was a chance he would fall for a guy?

If this is kind of weirdly muddled and unintelligible, maybe some context would help. I came up with this idea from listening to the Beauty and the Beast Broadway soundtrack, in which the enchantress's curse is "if he could learn to love another, and earn their love in return..." whereas in the movie it is "earn her love in return..." and I thought the discrepancy was interesting and showed how people sometimes don't think about the stereotypes inherent in what they're saying.

At any rate. Sorry for the long ramble. Hope someone can help me!

ETA: just because a couple people have commented that there were no druids around in the 12th century, I want to stress that I am not planning on having a real live druid show up. I'm just having someone use some druidic magic that has possibly been passed down through their family. So, no breach of history here. Sorry for the confusion.

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  • Current Music: Little Garcon, Little Fille; Born Ruffians

upper class japanese names for women

Hi, I'm looking for a subtly smart-sounding Japanese name (meanings and kanji are a plus, but I basically need something that just sounds smart to the ear). Story's modern-day. My character's rich, refined, and descended from Japanese nobility (Fujiwara, if that's of any help). Correct me if I'm wrong, but I've been working under the assumption that upper class families would prefer the old-fashioned names instead of the trendier ones, and with google I found out that these names are the ones with the -ko ending. But I've found nothing on names preferred by the nobility - again, correct me if I'm wrong, I would think that upper class and commoners then had different naming preferences, the same way the upper class in the English-speaking world were more likely to name their kids, say, Victoria, Elizabeth or Camilla and not Molly or Henrietta. So far I'm a bit partial to Yuriko or Reiko, but I have no idea about the stereotypes associated with them, or even if they're plausible aristocratic names. Help anyone?

Edit: She's in her early twenties, by the way.