It’s about time someone talked about how hard it really is to find your vagina. I thought I was the only one who struggled to put in a tampon.

At the College Feminists–sponsored production of Eve Ensler’s play “The Vagina Monologues,” which was performed on Feb. 2 in Strong Auditorium, it was definitely a relief to hear stories about all the various problems associated with vaginas because people don’t talk about it enough; it’s great to feel normal about all the happenings down there.

Aside from funny and relatable quips, there was a heavier blanket of truth the message of the performance‚ — we need to honestly talk about the female perspective more. It says a lot about our society and how we view female sexuality that the myriad of issues that come with having a vagina are unknown to most, including to many who have said organ.

Expletives were beautifully thrown around in such a way that captured my attention and emphasized the frustration associated with the various tribulations that many women endure daily. Senior Ava Sauer’s performance of “Reclaiming Cunt” did this in a particularly powerful way. I have always been uncomfortable with that word, but by the end of that monologue, it simply became a normal word, even a bit empowering at that.

Discomfort during the performance is normal, judging by the number of trigger warnings on the program. I could feel vicarious pain from a few of the monologues. Junior Samantha Richardson told the tale of “The Little Coochi Snorcher That Could,” in which her character injures her vagina while jumping on a bed and is sexually assaulted during her childhood. Another is “Hair,” where sophomore Shagun Bose’s character describes the painful sex she had because her husband forced her to shave her vagina. However, all of this discomfort was strategically interrupted with bits of humor, saving it from becoming a performance so raw it broke your heart.

Speaking of heartbreaking, the “Original Testimonial: Bounds” was just that. The combination of the dance performance by sophomore Yara Izhiman along with the haunting recorded testimonial of a woman’s experience in the Middle East gave me chills. It added another dimension to the message of the whole performance. In addition to this aspect of feminism, however, the discussion of asexuality and transgender women served to highlight modern issues and the many people that are often forget about when the feminine narrative is explored.

This is why performances like “The Vagina Monologues” are so important. Communication of messages through stories is an immensely powerful way of connecting to an audience, as opposed to only spewing facts and statistics about violence against women. People need to start feeling uncomfortable with our societal situation and the issues that women and so may others face every day if we are going to spark change. Personally, I’d love to see more performances like this: funny, entertaining, but also deeply informative. We need more of this kind of art, the kind that provokes uneasiness, understanding, and ultimately, pushes us into awareness that propels the progressive change that our world needs.



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