Why does it have to be “viruses from jungles?” Or other faraway places like China? Why can’t we have the Second City Virus, emanating from a slaughterhouse in Chicago and infecting people in Nigeria? Why can’t we have a Big Easy virus from New Orleans traveling to Beijing?
Perish the thought, but is it possible that jungles and Africa and China are typically chosen for virus fairy tales because, in the minds of many Westerners, they satisfy a requirement of “strange,” “different,” “primitive,” and so on? We’re talking theater here—and when you stage a propaganda play (fiction), you want to tap into the reflex instincts of the audience. The Hartford Virus, the Des Moines Virus, the Vancouver Virus just don’t fit the bill.
Because they can’t drive up the fear that jungles or Africa or China can.
Unless you’ve been living in an ice cave in the Arctic, you know selling fear of THE VIRUS is big business. To do that, you have to strike the right notes.The “hot zone” theory of new frightening diseases