My vagina is angry. So reads the shirt of junior sociology major and feminist Abigail “Abby” Mundy. Her interesting choice of attire advertises The Vagina Monologues, a play that showcases the struggles and triumphs of womankind. As assistant director of last year’s production, Abby was involved with casting, ticket sales, and rehearsals. February will bring the Vagina Monologues to IUP once again, with a production different from years past, as the show is revised every year.
This production, as well as many other events, is sponsored by Students Advocating for Gender Equality, of which Abby is vice president. The SAGE organization on campus works to gain support for the equality of every gender. Gender equality encompasses everything from women breaking out of the traditional homemaker role to the sexual choices of every gender being respected.
Abby elaborates, “I want myself and other people to be able to express ourselves how we see fit without restrictions placed on us because of our gender. Guys are allowed to cry and be sensitive. I don’t have to follow the norms of not talking about things like sex, because I like talking about sex. Women can enjoy sex and have it when they want. You have the right to stand up for yourself; if you don’t like something, you can say so and be respected.”
This point of view is one that Abby has maintained since childhood. In elementary school, Abby was inspired by Abigail Adams, partially because of their shared name and partially because of Abigail Adams’ coined phrase: “remember the ladies.” Abby says that she has carried feminism with her throughout her life.
“Just because I’m a girl, I should not be considered less intelligent or less capable of doing physical tasks. I can hold open my own doors and carry things for myself.”
Once she began college, Abby’s feminism evolved.
Although feminism is often viewed as a taboo term, Abby and other members of SAGE focus less on the women empowerment mentality of the sixties era and more on the current issues of social and sexual equality. Being a feminist does not mean that Abby does not shave her legs or wear a bra; she is an average college student with above average expectations for society.
As her major indicates, Abby is also interested in the way people think and interact with one another. Though Abby began her first year at the Robert E. Cook Honors College at IUP undecided, she declared sociology as her major after taking an introductory course.
“A lot of theories clicked with observations I had made on my own about how people interact. I like the different theories about how we react in groups; people are more complex than just one angle. The same theories don’t always work for the same situations.”
Because of the way statistics are often used in sociology, Abby has picked up a math minor as well.
As a junior, Abby’s career plans are not set in stone. She debates between working towards a doctorate degree in sociology— though the six extra years of schooling seem daunting— and earning a master’s degree in public policy, fueled by her increasing interest in politics and social policy.
Abby has a gut feeling that she will eventually work on a more academic level because she is, “basically genetically inclined to become a teacher,” following in the footsteps of her family members. Her love for children would make for an easy transition into the educational field.
Not only a sociologist advocating sexual equality, Abby also sings in a localchurch choir and enjoys knitting when she has the time. Abigail Mundy is an outstanding asset to the IUP community. The commitment she exhibits to her goals and values hint to the success she will enjoy in her future.
Photo via Facebook