Let’s talk about vaginas
The Vagina Monologues in Newfoundland
Article: David Maher – The Muse(Memorial University)
[dropcaps round=”no”]T[/dropcaps]he Vagina Monologues is not a show about vaginas. Sure, they’re a large part of the subject matter, but director Sandra Mills hopes that the show can help create conversation and help women get comfortable talking about their bodies.
Mills has been involved in productions of the show since 2008 as an actor and as the director since 2011. After seven years of involvement, Mills understands the importance of the show.
“The show has such a history. It’s coming up on 20 years of Monologues. [Vaginas] are still not something that people feel comfortable discussing. A lot of people think the show is ‘anti-male propaganda’—which it is not at all,” said Mills. “We’re trying to make it okay for people to talk about their bodies. The Vagina Monologues suggests that we’re talking at you. We’re not. We’re talking to you.”
Initially, there was concern the show would not be able to happen. The Women’s Resource Centre decided against being directly involved in this year’s production, though they offered Mills support should she be able to get a group together to do the show. Mills was able to pull together support from past organizers of the show to ensure the 2014 production could take place.
“There’s a plethora of people who want to see this show done every year,” said Mills. “I put out a call asking if anyone wanted to be involved and people came at me like a bullet. Very quickly we were able to get a group together to ensure this year’s production would happen.”
One of the more controversial monologues featured in the show is a stark, frank, and rhythmic monologue called “Reclaiming Cunt.” Unsurprisingly, the piece gets a lot of attention for trying to get people to talk about the word and making it okay to use the word when referring to a vagina.
“I have to say, I love the word. I understand how it can be contentious. I don’t think it’s meant to be malicious, though I do know why people may not like it,” said Mills. “It’s an awesome word. We’re trying to make it okay for both men and women to say it. As long as you’re not being derogatory in any way, it’s not a bad word. We don’t want you to think of it in a bad way. It’s a cunt. It’s a vagina. It’s a word. It’s ours. It’s awesome, and we’re going to take it back.”
Mills wants you to feel okay using words and talking about subjects that are otherwise seen as taboo. So get out there. Go to the show. Help women of all creed and colour reclaim the right to talk about their bodies.
The Vagina Monologues plays for one night only on Jan. 31 at the LSPU Hall. Tickets are $20 for general admission or $15 for students and seniors and can be purchased at the box office or over the phone at 753-4531.
[button style=”e.g. solid, border” size=”e.g. small, medium, big” link=”” target=””]Image: Nickyfern/Flickr Creative Commons[/button]