By Matt Castro
To celebrate National Women’s History Month, the Ammerman office of Campus Activities put on a free performance of Eve Ensler’s play, ‘The Vagina Monologues,’ for two days during the week of March 16 at the Islip Arts building.
The performance featured a cast of 13 women composed of students and faculty, and the show enlightened the audience on a variety of issues that women face in their lives. Representatives from the office of Campus Activities at Ammerman organized the production which exhibited the trials, confusions, and intricate natures of female sexuality.
The play’s author, Eve Ensler, began the V-Day movement in 1998 to end violence against women due to the strong reaction of her audience for this play, and she offers schools that have joined the V-Day College Campaign to stage up to two performances of her play free of charge.
The subject matter is relevant, and consists of varying discussions about sex, love, appearance, rape, the many names or slang terms for the vagina, shame, and female genital mutilation. The play’s themes focus on the empowerment of women, which is not actively conversed about socially with the vigor that many would hope to see.
Following the show, the organizers held a Q&A session with the audience regarding the 13 vignettes which were performed.
“It was inspiring to see everyone so engaged and comfortable while talking about what many would consider is an awkward subject,” Cassandra Whelan, a performer of the show and liberal arts major, said.
The Vagina Monologues lets people know that the experiences discussed are not isolated incidents that women go through, that they are not alone, and that the female members of the audience should be proud of who they are, as well as educating the male viewers on topics that are not typically brought to light in their culture.
“This play is extremely important because female empowerment continues to be a marginalized issue and it would be a positive outcome if an active dialogue started as a result of this play,” Lorraine Perdomo, a Graduate Assistant and performer, said.