“I bet you’re worried.”
These were the first words spoken at the Vagina Monologues that took place on Feb. 15, 16 and 17 by the Feminist Majority Leadership Alliance (FMLA) and the Women’s Studies department. These monologues were originally a piece written by Eve Ensler as a solo performance twenty years ago and have since been adapted and performed by groups across the world, according to senior art history major and FMLA President Erin Dempsey.
“I think that the monologues are important because it is a taboo topic,” Dempsey said. “We want the performance
to spark conversation with and about those living with vaginas and help people feel more comfortable talking about very real issues.”
For many, the subject of vaginas certainly seems strange. It is not something we openly talk about, which is one of the reasons FMLA and the Women’s Studies department produces these monologues.
“It was just pure joy working with faculty and students from so many different disciplines,” said theatre instructor and director of the Monologues, Deanna Brookens. “We laughed a lot, and more than anything encouraged and supported one another. It was wonderful.”
“My hope—and experience—was that through engaging monologues that deal with a vast array of issues affecting women and people with vaginas, that [the audience] would leave empowered, inspired, and eager to stand up for social justice issues,” Brookens added.
The monologues throughout the performance carried varying tones. Some were humorous while others were serious, but each one carried its own message and story about real women and their vaginas.
“Some of the monologues address light-hearted social issues, [like the concept of hair] while others cover heavier topics surrounding rape and sexual violence,” Dempsey said.
Dempsey said the monologues tell women that their issues with vaginas are valid, and that it’s okay to talk about them and be proud of their bodies, also stating that the Vagina Monologues can empower others.
“Several members of the cast this year were people who saw the production two years ago and felt compelled to be involved,” Dempsey said.
Not only does this production empower others, but all proceeds from the show benefit Butler VOICe, Lawrence County Crisis Shelter, and the V-Day initiative according to Brookens.
To learn more about FMLA and keep up with their events throughout this semester, follow them on Twitter @FMLAsru or go to their OrgSync page.