The Laramie Project

The Laramie Project


Moisés Kaufman

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The Laramie Project: Act 1: A Scarf Summary & Analysis

Stephen Belber, one of the playwrights, has breakfast with university student and Islamic feminist Zubaida Ula. Zubaida tells Stephen that she and her parents moved to Laramie from Bangladesh when she was four. Zubaida decided a few years ago to start wearing a headscarf, and it changed how people in the community interacted with her. Frustratingly, many people expected her to explain her choice as she was going about her daily life (for example, in the aisle of the grocery store). Zubaida talks about how strange it is for her that the company is writing a play about Laramie and that she and the rest of the town will be represented on stage.
Zubaida Ula feels like her privacy is invaded when people she does not know ask her questions about her headscarf. Zubaida experiences a real religious marginalization that contrasts with the victimization people like the Baptist Minister imagine. Zubaida, who elsewhere expresses support for LGBT people, seems to have been made more aware of the struggles people outside of the norm face through her own experience with being a Muslim in Wyoming.
Homophobia, Tolerance, and Acceptance Theme Icon
Religion, Morality, and Prejudice Theme Icon
Theater and Representation Theme Icon