PLATTSBURGH — This year marks the 20th anniversary of Eve Ensler’s “The Vagina Monologues,” which was the catalyst for a women-articulated conversation about women’s sexuality and the social stigmas of rape and abuse.
On Valentine’s Day 1998, Ensler launched “V-Day,” a global-activist movement to end violence against women and girls. Translated into more than 48 languages, the play — written in 1994 — has been performed in more than 140 countries.
This weekend, a new cast of SUNY Plattsburgh students will present “The Vagina Monologues” in Krinovitz Recital Hall.
“It’s a show that everyone should have the opportunity to see,” said Elizabeth Rafferty, director and a senior majoring in Gender and Women’s Studies.
“There is so much packed into those 90 minutes. You really get to see life through the eyes of women you might not have got to see except through their shoes. There are monologues about domestic violence, systematic tactics of war, women feeling uncomfortable in their and about their bodies. It’s a large array of experiences. You laugh. You cry.”
Rafferty is an alum of the production.
“I wanted to direct it,” she said. “It’s something I want to see happen every year at SUNY Plattsburgh and to get girls doing different monologues year after year because it is so important.”
She directs a 15-member cast.
“We’re doing all the monologues in the original script, and Eve Ensler lets you choose spotlight monologues you have to do specific this year.”
Rafferty chose a monologue on “Comfort Women,” women and girls who were forced into a prostitution corps by the Empire of Japan during World War II.
“The other one is about trans women, ‘They Beat the Girl Out of My Boy,’” she said. “The spotlight monologue this year is about 1 Billion Rising (For Justice).”