"Inland Passage" and Other Stories

The Love Boat: How Connection and Sexuality Evolve in "Inland Passage" College

The Love Boat Escape from everyday life is often a necessity, but one never thinks about how it can be life-changing. It is expected that life will resume as usual when one steps back onto her home soil, but that is not always the case. A vacation is a time of furlough from the quotidian world we inhabit. Cruises are vacations on which one is able to enjoy luxury and explore many new places with the convenience of moving, yet cramped, lodgings. In Jane Rule’s “Inland Passage”, the characters embark on an Alaskan cruise - a vacation quite popular with older generations - and share a tiny cabin to cut costs. When Fidelity Munroe and Troy McFadden, two middle-aged women who have both recently lost a dear partner, are thrust together their relationship begins to develop quickly and deeply. In “Inland Passage”, the unique setting of a cruise vacation allows for the relationship of Fidelity and Troy to develop further, as the confinement and the surrounding people allow them to grow closer and examine the possibilities for homosexual relations in their atypical setting.

The women’s potential for romantic closeness is exposed from the first paragraph of the narrative, when they enter the cramped room which is to be their quarters for...

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