Review Tuesday: The Vagina Monologues by Eve Ensler

I was first introduced to The Vagina Monologues by Eve Ensler when I was in my first year of university. Some of the students at Queen’s University put on the play, and one of my friends was in it, so myself, and some other friends from my floor went to see the play. The play was powerful, authentic, and changed my perspective of how I looked at myself, and women’s issues.

I had not however ever read the play, and once I learned that Emma Watson had picked it as her Jan/Feb Feminist Book Club pick, I decided to give it a go.

vagina-monologuesFrom Goodreads:

I decided to talk to women about their vaginas, to do vagina interviews, which became vagina monologues…At first women were reluctant to talk. They were a little shy. But once they got going, you couldn’t stop them. Women secretly love to talk about their vaginas. They get very excited, mainly because no one’s ever asked them before.

It’s been over a decade since I saw the play The Vagina Monologues, so I was excited to read the book and see what I remembered and how I reacted this time.

I have to say that if you ever get a chance to see the play do it. I enjoyed the book, but the play – seeing it live – is where it packs a punch.

The play and this book are simply stories of women and how they view their vaginas. And while that may seem strange to some, it is powerful. When reading this book, I remembered the story The Flood. For some reason that stayed with me all these years. The images it produces are visceral. Another story I remembered is My Angry Vagina. I once again laughed out loud at just how on the money it was. I found myself muttering “damn fucking right,” as I read it too.

Another story, that I didn’t remember from the play when I saw it, but packed a punch while I was reading the book is My Vagina was my Village. This story broke my heart, and I’m sure it did when I first heard it.

The main thing I took away from these stories and this book/play (this time) was how much the world views vaginas and women and women’s issues as something that shouldn’t be talked about, or something that should only be talked about behind closed doors and whispered. Society is very much interested in keeping the status quo – and the status quo (let’s be real) doesn’t work for women.

The book also talks about V-Day, which is day that was created to celebrate vaginas, and to bring attention and to stop violence against women. And while it was a day created in the 90’s, it is still incredibly important. There are too many societies who think that it is their right to govern women’s bodies, their way of dressing, their sexuality, their thoughts, and that shit has got to stop.

Today is actually V-Day. If you don’t want to know more about it check it out here.

If you haven’t ever read this book or seen this play make sure that you do (woman or man). It is a must.

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