Photo and Story by Connor Burnard / Contributing Writer
On Monday night, MTSU’s Students Active for Feminism and Equality organization or S.A.F.E. held a performance of the play “The Vagina Monologues” by Eve Ensler in the Tom Jackson Building on campus.
“The Vagina Monologues” is a 1996 play that is comprised of 11 personal stories about sex, violence, health and other experiences shared by women about their reproductive organs. The monologues were performed by 10 different members of S.A.F.E., with “inner monologue facts” about vaginas dispersed between monologues.
The stories all address different issues related to vaginas. Some of the topics monologues addressed were good and bad sexual experiences, rape, embarrassment, giving birth, learning about sex and the stigma around sex.
One monologue called “The Flood” is the story of a 72-year-old woman talking embarrassedly about her vagina and never having an orgasm before, which stemmed from an uncomfortable sexual experience as a teenager. Other monologues included “I Was There in the Room,” which is Ensler’s recalling of her granddaughter’s birth and “My Vagina was My Village,” which describes rape camps set up by Bosnian soldiers in the Bosnian War.
Delaney Dean, a sophomore studying music business at MTSU, was S.A.F.E.’s host for “The Vagina Monologues” and said that the play is important to get people talking about an uncomfortable topic.
“It brings attention to vaginas and it gets people talking about them in different aspects because we don’t really sit down and have conversations about ‘My vagina’s doing this today’ or ‘I feel weird about this.’ It’s just bringing those conversations to life, the conversations people don’t really have. It’s a lot of visibility and important topics to talk about,” Dean said.
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Also in attendance was Sharon Travis, the head of college outreach at the Sexual Assault Center of Middle Tennessee. After the play, she offered words of empowerment to students.
“Keep doing what you’re doing. Keep encouraging, and keep honoring the vagina. Show it some love. Call it whatever you want to call it,” Travis said.
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