Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Monday, January 26, 2015: Monday, January 26, 2015: Speak For Yourself! Vagina Monologues Re-examined

Mount Holyoke cancels Vagina Monologues

Mount Holyoke College, an all-women's school in Massachusetts, has scrapped plans to host a performance of "The Vagina Monologues" because it is not inclusive enough. Mount Holyoke student Erin Murphy explained on behalf of the student-run theater board in an email to students that the play is problematic because it is not inclusive of trans women, Campus Reform reported. "At its core, the show offers an extremely narrow perspective on what it means to be a woman," Murphy explained, according to Campus Reform a right-wing magazine.

Eve Ensler's classic play, The Vagina Monologues, and her V-Day organization* that is an organized response against violence toward women, have recently come under fire for excluding the experience of trans people. Transnational feminists have long critiqued the notion that the vagina is enough to create a bond between women whose material and social conditions vary so widely. Yet women in at least 140 countries have chosen to use the play as a vehicle to explore issues important to their struggles for equity and safety.
Timothy Boatwright (center), a trans man, with his Wellesley classmates.CreditMartin Schoeller for The New York Times

On this week's show, we explore these and other issues about the play and the movement that has grown up around it, with three guests: scholar-turned-essayist Christine Cooper, author of "Worrying About Vaginas," Suzanna Walters, author of The Tolerance Trap: How God, Genes and Good Intentions Are Sabotaging Gay Equality, and director of Women's, Gender and Sexuality Studies at Northeastern University, and Sima Shakhsari, professor of Women and Gender Studies at Wellsley College.

Christine Cooper discusses in depth the problems with Vagina Monologues and how they are being resolved. Listen now or Get MP3. 18:38 min.

Suzanna Walters gives us a different perspective on Vagina Monologues. Listen now or Get MP3. 7:08 min.

Sima Shakhsari discusses the New York Times Magazine article, When Women Become Men at Wellesley, about feminists and trans students at Wellesley and the problem with the binary framing of gender and the defining of gender based on biology. Listen now or Get MP3. 12:18 min.

*Bay Area Rising and IDEX are organizing their 3rd annual event for V-Day to end violence against all cis gender and trans gender women and girls. There will be a rally and flashmob in Oakland on Feb 13 and a star-studded event on Sat  Feb 14 at the First Prebsyterian Church in Oakland. Buy your tickets soon as they always sell out. Go to for Flashmob dance rehersals and other info.

Click here to listen to entire show.

Also on today's show:
Reproductive Justice
Dhaya Lakshminarayanan

1 comment:

  1. I must say, I thought this was a pretty interesting read when it comes to this topic. Liked the material. . . . .
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