On Thursday, the Northridge Center became a plethora of emotional outpouring as women spoke vehemently about their nether regions in this CSUN rendition of “The Vagina Monologues.”
The “Vagina Monologues” is a compilation of discourses based on interviews with hundreds of women, which comes together to form both a comedic and tragic story.
No topic was too racy for this performance; the monologues covered such issues as hair, smell, taste, menstruation, sexual assault, genital mutilation, transgender aspirations and lesbian relations between minors and adults.
Bonnie Sludikoff, the show’s director and stage manager, said that putting on a show like this is “the only way to break through the things that have become taboo.”
Those starring in the production all had their own reasons for performing in “The Vagina Monologues,” but the overall desire was to make a difference by presenting a piece that related to all women in some way.
Jodi Adler chose to perform in “The Vagina Monologues” because it offered a “good combination of acting and activism.”
The overall consensus of the cast is that this production benefits women in many ways. It not only allows them a chance to ventilate some of their repressed emotions, but it also gives them a new sense of meaning in a world that constantly tells them what they can and cannot display about themselves.
“I could mostly relate to the events that take place in the monologues,” said Khira Thomas, a performer.
She also said that she appreciated the chance to “make people aware of the type of oppression that women face.”
Adler stated, “Almost every woman will identify with [her] ‘angry vagina.'”
But what about those who don’t agree with some of the controversial nuances of “The Vagina Monologues?”
Many would find it offensive to see a woman bless herself in the name of The Holy Trinity as she gives off the orgasmic sounds of an “Irish Catholic Moan” during lesbian sex. Perhaps more so, in light of the child molestation charges currently being held against Michael Jackson, some would find it inappropriate to recount, in full detail, the story of a 13-year-old girl’s seduction by a 24-year-old woman.
“The production hits different people at various levels, if people are not at a liberal level, than they’re the ones who really need to come,” said organizer and producer Desiree Gaines. “There’s so much that people don’t understand, not just about vaginas, but about women as well.”
Some questions could also be raised as to the inherent double standard that is expressed in “The Vagina Monologues”.
When asked what her reaction would be to seeing a group of men yelling “Penis, Penis, Penis!” during a show, Gaines had this to say,
“Men are already somewhat of an oppressive class, versus women who are constantly fighting for equality. A woman walking into a room of men yelling ‘Penis, Penis, Penis’ would be like a black man walking into a room of whites yelling ‘white power.'”
Regardless of the political and/or moral objections that one may hold against “The Vagina Monologues,” there is definite common ground that everyone can reach with regards to promoting the global well being of women.
This event was sponsored by AS. V-Day provided the production information and materials, a non-profit corporation determined to ending the violence and atrocities committed against women globally. V-Day raises money for distribution to various organizations by way of events and celebrations.
The CSUN performance of “The Vagina Monologues” was part of V-Day’s college campaign, and all proceeds went to the Haven Hill Foundation.
The Haven Hill Foundation has been helping victims of domestic abuse for over 27 years. They offer services such as shelter, crisis intervention, and counseling to women and children who have been victimized by domestic violence.