The UMKC Women’s Center, co-sponsoring with the UMKC Violence Prevention & Response Program, put on a stirring performance of The Vagina Monologues by Eve Ensler last week.
“Women secretly love to talk about their vaginas. They get very excited, mainly because no one has ever asked them before.”
The Vagina Monologues is a series of orations spoken by a varying number of wildly different women. With titles such as “My Angry Vagina,” “Because He Liked To Look At It,” “The Little Coochie Snorcher That Could” and “Reclaiming Cunt,” it is clear that The Vagina Monologues delves in to an expansive collection of topics. The monologues range from droll to sexy to poignant to somber.
The Vagina Monologues isn’t just a play for women to get excited about and intimate with their lady parts – it is also firm and valuable lesson on womanhood in society today. It is about navigating female stigmas and stereotypes with dignity, confidence and defiance.
“Performing in the Vagina Monologues is empowering because women are taught not to talk about their autonomies and sexualities,” said Junior Kara Lewis. “This show completely counters that. Personally, I’ve never heard the word ‘vagina’ spoken aloud in public outside of a Women and Gender Studies class here at UMKC, and I think that needs to change.”
Although this performance is a yearly collaboration for the Women’s Center and the Violence Prevention & Response Center, this year’s rendition felt especially relevant.
“As a woman, it was extremely disheartening to hear my choices and healthcare deemed ‘unnecessary’ during the debates and so far, during this new administration,” said Lewis. “Performing in the Vagina Monologues was a way to take back that power and sense of control.”
While there was only one performance of The Vagina Monologues, all proceeds benefited the Women’s Center and the V-Day Until the Violence Stops campaign, which brings together activists from all over to raise money to fund the fight against violence toward women girls.
When so many theatrical performances seek to distance themselves from social issues, The Vagina Monologues tenaciously addresses some of the most oppressive issues that woman face every day. The Vagina Monologues is an illuminating performance for anyone who has experienced the ups and downs of having a vagina, loves women or believes in a revolution for sexual equality.
For more events and ways to get involved, contact the UMKC Women’s Center or the Violence Prevention & Response Center.