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Last Friday night, I sat in the Dennison Theater laughing until tears filled my eyes.  Ten minutes later this emotion was replaced with an intense sadness.  It isn’t always easy hearing about your vagina, especially in such graphic terms.  Hearing about all the ways the vagina has been abused and oppressed can be painful, but hearing about how your vagina can be liberated is one of the most beautiful things you will ever experience. 

The Vagina Monologues are all about taking back what is ours.  It’s about abolishing the taboos and stigmas surrounding sexual freedom.  It helps create dialogue.  In our society, talking about your vagina is strange, but the Monologues encourage females to think differently.  Our vagina is a part of us…it is the essence of who we are.

In addition to the Monologues, the production also celebrated One Billion Rising.  Remember all the dancing on the oval Thursday afternoon?  These were all women rising up against the violence and abuse on women.  After the Monologues were finished, women from the UM Women’s Resource Center took the stage and told the audience why they were rising against violence.  Why do you want to rise up?  I want to rise up because no girl should have her innocence stolen from her.  Each individual should have the freedom to choose their sexual destiny, not be forced into it.

Go read more reasons to rise up on the V-Day blog:  www.onebillionrising.org/blog

After attending the Vagina Monologues, I did a little research.  Each year, the UM Women’s Resource Center sponsors a production of the Vagina Monologues, a series of skits based on interviews with women about their vaginas.  The Monologues are part of a bigger effort, called V-Day, which is a global activist movement to end violence against women and girls.  V-Day fights to increase awareness as well as educate about the realities of violence and abuse of women and girls.  V-Day was established on Valentine’s Day in 1998 by Eve Ensler, who compiled the interviews she conducted into a play.    

The proceeds from the production go to a charity of the Women’s Resource Center’s choice; this year the recipient was Emma’s House, a shelter for abused children located in Hamilton, MT.   

For more information on V-Day, visit their website at:  www.vday.org

For more information on Emma’s House, go to:  www.emmashousecac.org

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