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Women's Studies to perform ‘The Vagina Monologues'

The Austin Peay State University Womens Studies program will present The Vagina Monologues in observance of V-Day, a global non-profit campaign to stop violence against women.
The Austin Peay State University Women's Studies program will present “The Vagina Monologues” in observance of V-Day, a global non-profit campaign to stop violence against women.

The first performance will begin at 7 p.m., Tuesday, Feb. 26 in the Clement Auditorium. The second performance will begin at 7 p.m., Wednesday, Feb. 27 in the Clement Auditorium. Tickets are $5, and additional donations will be accepted. All the proceeds from the production will go to benefit Legal Aide Society of Middle Tennessee, Rape and Sexual Abuse Center and Safehouse. Both performances are open to the public.

The seventh annual production of “The Vagina Monologues” is part of a Women's Studies course, taught by Dr. Jill Eichhorn, coordinator of the Women's Studies program. All the students enrolled in the course participate in the performances.

“It's rewarding to be part of a process in which students grow to see themselves differently. Students report that they discover parts of themselves that they did not know existed. It's rewarding to watch students grow in their sense of control over their lives and bodies,” Eichhorn said.

Eve Ensler, the playwright behind “The Vagina Monologues,” once said, “I say vagina because I want people to respond.” Theaters and activist organizations across the globe have been responding since “The Vagina Monologues” debuted in 1996. Ensler's play premiered at HERE Arts Center, before being featured at the off Broadway Westside Theater. The play won an Obie Award for Best Play in 1997.

“The Vagina Monologues” continues to be staged internationally in observance of V-Day, the campaign that Ensler launched a decade ago. Since the inception of V-Day, performances of “The Vagina Monologues” have raised more than $50 million for anti-violence against women.

“Each year, V-Day designates a v-spot, a special focus for attention and funds. They ask each V-Day production to donate 10 percent of its revenue to the v-spot. This year, the v-spot is the women of New Orleans,” Eichhorn said.

Celebrities and V-Day supporters such as Ellen DeGeneres, Jane Fonda and Oprah Winfrey will be joining Ensler in a production of “The Vagina Monologues” in the New Orleans Superdome on the weekend of April 11. The event, “V to the Tenth,” will be in commemoration of V-Day's tenth anniversary.

For more information about the performances and V-Day, contact Eichhorn by telephone at (931) 221-6314 or by e-mail at eichhornje@apsu.edu. -- Jessica Baird