Monologues address human issues

Students practice for “The Vagina Monologues” Feb. 9. “It gives a voice to all different kinds of younger women and older women,” Massey said.

by Student Writer Hillary Taylor

The Center for Women’s Studies will sponsor a production of Eve Ensler’s award-winning play “The Vagina Monologues” Feb. 9.

The monologues are a series of stories told from the first-person perspective that strive to express what it is like to be a woman in the modern world.

These monologues represent a variety of women, including the story of a woman who had witnessed the birth of her granddaughter and a story from a 6-year-old girl.

This year’s production includes a diverse cast of students, faculty and staff performing.

Senior Ashley Massey has participated in past performances of the monologues and will be co-directing with sophomore Karlee Mauk for the first time this year.

She said the audience should expect to laugh, cry and have their world opened to engaging in women’s issues.

“’The Vagina Monologues’ is important to have on campuses,” Massey said. “It gives a voice to all different kinds of younger women and older women.”

Mauk said on-campus sexual harassment is not talked about as much as it should be.

The show addresses the struggles women around the world face, including serious subjects such as body image, rape, marriage, empowerment and the taboo surrounding the female body.

“It’s kind of like reclaiming our bodies in a way,” Massey said. “Society objectifies women’s bodies routinely, and ‘The Vagina Monologues’ takes that power back.”

For many years, the university has held an annual performance of one of Eve Ensler’s productions. The center donates a portion of the proceeds to Ensler’s organization.

The organization is an activist movement that raises funds and awareness for prevention of violence against women.

Emily Kelley, coordinator of the Center for Women’s Studies, said she has been in every production since she began working at UNA in 2009.

“We want to do it because it’s important,” Kelley said. “The show is hilarious, and it brings light to a lot of women’s issues and makes them easier to talk about. It makes them what they really are — human issues.”

The movement has raised over $100 million for the cause to date, which goes to educating millions, opening shelters and creating anti-violence programs in countries around the world, according to vday.org.

Sophomore Berklie Nix said it is a great opportunity to educate those who are not as like-minded about women’s issues.

“It’s not a bad thing to be a feminist,” Nix said. “It has such a bad reputation right now, and feminism isn’t hating men. It’s about equality.”

The production will take place in the Guillot University Center Performance Center. Doors open at 6:45 p.m., and the performance begins at 7. Tickets at the door are $5 for students and $7 for nonstudents.