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V-Day Edition' Is a Campaign for Change

Originally published in:
Ivy State Tech College Journal Review

Doug Hunt
There is an epidemic of violence against women throughout the world. “The Vagina Monologues,” a play by Eve Ensler, attempts to help women overcome problems involving gender issues.

Ensler talked Sunday afternoon during a press conference in the Wabash College Fine Arts Center. Her play was performed Sunday night in the Fine Arts Center’s Ball Theater.

The “Monologues: The V-Day Edition” are part of Ensler’s campaign to obliterate dishonor and disconcertion many women associate with their bodies and sexuality. The play has been gaining critical acclaim throughout the world.

Last year, there were 2,300 “V-Day” events, celebrations in more than 1,100 cities, villages and towns.

Ensler understands sexual abuse and violence first-hand. She was sexually abused by her father until she was age 10, but still had to live through the punishments her father inflicted.

Ensler’s concern is to help women not to become victimized, through such meaningless acts as physical and mental abuse. “To stop violence from women there are more people getting involved,” she said.

Ensler classified the soldiers against violence as Vagina Warriors.

“Vagina Warriors can be both women and men,” Ensler said. The men and women who have experienced or saw violence are now taking a new role by becoming politically active instead of using violence to solve violence, she said.

Ensler believes Iraqi women are suffering more now since the U.S. bombed Iraq than under the previous Iraqi leadership.

“There has been an illusion of freedom for women in Iraq,” Ensler said. “There has been a rise of Islamic fundamentalists and violence against women.”

There was no way people in the U.S. could understand the years of tribalism between the Sunnis and Kurds, and the increase is terrorism among Arabs that has occurred since the U.S. bombed Iraqi, she said.

“We will look back on this whole period of time when the whole earth changed,” Ensler said.

It was not right for the U.S. to have the arrogance to think “they knew what was best for Iraq,” Ensler said. “There is no way for me to assume what people in Crawfordsville want,” a reason why Iraq would have been tough to figure what was best needed for its people, she said.

Ensler is still optimistic that caring men will help make a difference in helping to stop the violence against women. She has already seen something of a start, event at Wabash.

“The world is changing,” Ensler said. “I saw a guy sitting on a couch, wearing a ‘Vagina’ T-shirt. That is real change because he will not grow up and beat women. He has changed.”