THE CURRENT STATE OF ‘THE VAGINA MONOLOGUES’

LIAM EASLEY, TRUMPET ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT EDITOR

“Raise the Vibration” was to replace the 2021 “Vagina Monologues,” but it was unfortunately cancelled due to the pandemic and scheduling, according to the Wartburg chapter V-Day Campaign president Josephine Ostenberg. 

“With ‘Raise the Vibration,’ we wanted to hear what people’s stories were,” Ostenberg said. “Two or three years ago, we had a student-written piece called ‘What’s Your Story?’, and in it were actual testimonies from Wartburg students about things that have happened to them either on campus or before they came. We wanted to continue on that legacy of letting [students] dictate what our content is.” 

Although this event will not be happening, the V-Day Campaign has other plans. The organization will be going through with their annual themed photoshoot, this year’s theme being “Hold My Hand.” This photoshoot will be welcoming all genders, but mostly catering to men, as the theme is attempting to overcome toxic masculinity. 

PHOTO FROM LAST YEAR’S PERFORMANCE. PHOTO COURTESY OF THE WARTBURG COLLEGE V-DAY CAMPAIGN FACEBOOK PAGE.

“We’re inviting men and all genders alike to come and tell their stories about things that are typically too feminine for men to do, like painting your nails or wearing face masks [face moisturizer], wearing dresses and expressing that feminine side of yourself, allowing yourself to show emotion publicly and challenging not just toxic masculinity but gender norms in general.” 

The photos make their annual appearances on the wall opposite of the business office in Luther Hall. All of the photos will be auctioned off later this semester at the annual V-Day silent auction. 

The V-Day Campaign has chapters all across the nation and was started by Eve Ensler, the playwright behind “The Vagina Monologues.” 

“It’s about hearing people out,” Ostenberg said, “And giving people a space to be heard.” 

The V-Day Campaign is open to students of all genders. However, it is likely that “The Vagina Monologues” will not be seen as often as before, as the organization itself has recently taken to writing a new version of the play called “Voices.” 

“Because of what we’ve seen this summer,” Ostenberg said, “with all these protests begging for racial equality, [our mother chapter] came forward and said, ‘The Vagina Monologues was very radical for its own time.’ What the big organization is doing right now is they’re putting together a new kind of performance… called “Voices,” and it’s featuring the voices of Black women.” 

According to the V-Day website, the new adaptation seeks “to unify the vision of ending violence against women: cis women, trans women and non-binary people across the African continent and African Diaspora.” 

Keep an eye out for Women Wednesday tomorrow on the V-Day Campaign Facebook page, a video series hosted by V-Day Campaign treasurer Lura Adjini. Women Wednesday focuses on a different woman from the Wartburg community each week, who Adjini interviews. Lately, the series has been focused on Wartburg alum and how they continue to carry on the V-Day message after college. 

For more information, email josephine.ostenberg@wartburg.edu. 

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