V-Day 2010

February 16, 2010 2 Comments

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I know I’m coming late to the party, but I saw the Vagina Monologues for the first time this weekend and I was blown away by it.  Rather than writing yet another raving review of what evidently is a deeply moving work of art, I want to make a comment on the movement that it has unleashed.

I saw the play as produced by MIT undergraduate students who did it in concert with thousands of others around the world – I think it most appropriate to let V-Day speak for itself:

V-Day is a global movement to stop violence against women and girls. V-Day is a catalyst that promotes creative events to increase awareness, raise money and revitalize the spirit of existing anti-violence organizations. V-Day generates broader attention for the fight to stop violence against women and girls, including rape, battery, incest, female genital mutilation (FGM) and sexual slavery.

So I was able to experience this moving, enlightening and even transformative piece of art, as a man, in the company of my fiancé, on Valentine’s day, as part of a most significant movement to wake us all up to the voice of the silenced.  I literally broke into tears as we were reminded that the violence in Congo, where 6 million people have died in the last 13 years, is the worst the world has seen since World War II.  Women bear the brunt of this violence in what can accurately be called a campaign of femicide.

What is so great about auther Eve Ensler is that she allows women to speak for themselves, she curates in a way that is not invasive or directive, she creates space for something that has long wanted to be said and in doing so she has unleashed a great force.  I don’t know of many better ways to make art for social change.

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