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Lancaster has been incredibly honored by Eve Ensler, author of ‘The Vagina Monologues’, agreeing to come and visit us to give a talk on her new campaign ‘One Billion Rising’. “One billion women are raped or beaten, this is an atrocity – one billion women dancing to defy this is a revolution”; ‘One Billion Rising’ is the dance revolution that is hoped to be expanded across the world. By focusing on a positive action to create awareness and change rather than just focusing on the negative implication of the statistic, Ensler has once again struck a balance between the serious informative face of feminist struggle, and the proactive feeling of being part of a worldwide community of women working together to create equality.
What I love about ‘Vagina Monologues’ is this balance: there are funny monologues, day-to-day problem monologues that many women could find easy to identify with, and then the serious monologues addressing dreadful breaches of human rights in the female world.
The message of the campaign is one that can be appreciated by everyone, and that is why I think it’s definitely a play everyone should see at least once in their lifetime.
Eve Ensler coming to Lancaster on the 3rd February is an incredible opportunity for our students and the general community of Lancaster to become engaged in the One Billion Rising campaign. I’m still awed at fact our director, Sam Aldridge, has managed to secure her attendance! Eve has only confirmed two locations to speak at about ‘One Billion Rising’: Lancaster and London, and to me this makes an indication of just how big a deal this is for Lancaster.
The day will involve a flash mob of the official dance at Market Square in the City at 1pm followed by a reception in the City Library adjacent to get the opportunity to hear Ensler talk about her campaign, and ask her questions about how she came to be an international advocate of women’s rights. There will then be an open mic session encouraging people to present their poetry, music, and monologues to Ensler and the attendance.
The Vagina Monologues are more than just an awareness raising campaign, the fundraising element is an incredible help to the local community, as all proceeds go to a women’s charity from our community. It’s easy for us, living in a modern liberal society to ignore the struggle of women, it’s not something that is necessarily seen as a modern issue, however the statistics indicate that in the UK 1 in 4 female students’ will be subject to sexual assault in her time at University. Campaigns like the Vagina Monologues need to be supported by everyone to try and make this statistic history.
Such opportunities are few and far between, I’m incredibly excited to meet her, and I hope that everyone reading this will try to attend, and come to see ‘The Vagina Monologues’ when they are performed in week 5, tickets are now on sale from the LUSU Info Desk!