Third World Border Hysteria

Third World Border Hysteria, Abouali
Farmanfarmaian, Outpost
Since the 1979 U.S./Iran hostage crisis, Abouali Farmanfarmaian and
other travelers of middle eastern heritage have suffered from a
unique-but-humiliating condition: third world border hysteria.
‘Symptoms range from feelings of vulnerability usually seen in
abandoned toddlers,’ he writes in Outpost, ‘to
seizures and a puckered sphincter at passport control booths.
‘Farmanfarmaian, of Iranian background, tells [his story] of
repeated border hassles and refusals: ‘I’ve been turned back from
the border of Sweden while Eurailing as a teenager,’ he recalls,
‘laughed at by Belgian patrols on a train, refused entry into
France. I’ve been pulled aside by the Brits, the Swiss, the
Americans, the Italians, the Dutch.’ And once he became a Canadian
citizen, he hoped it would all end. It didn’t.
–Amanda Luker
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