In order to raise awareness about sexual harassment and misconduct, Wilkes University will be presenting “The Vagina Monologues” on Feb. 22 at 7 p.m. and Feb. 23 at 2 p.m.
According to the Wilkes University handbook “Sexual harassment is defined as unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors and/or any other visual, verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature.”
For this reason, Wilkes offers resources to inform the campus community about programs in place regarding issues surrounding sexual misconduct, as well as available support systems for victims.
However, outside of Wilkes, people still face a variety of other struggles including but not limited to sexual assault, female genital mutilation, harassment, rape, battery, incest and sex slavery all over the world. Due to this, there have been more events, campaigns and other means to make people aware and educate them about these types of issues.
The Vagina Monologues, a play based on interviews with more than 200 women, strives to promote awareness of violence against all women and girls that are subject to gender based violence.
“While this is a show about tough topics, it’s also a lot of fun and there’s a lot of humor that really makes seeing it a good time,” said Olivia Caraballo, co-director of the event.
Both shows will be held in the Henry Student Center Ballroom. Admission is free for Wilkes University students (with ID), $5 for non-Wilkes students (with ID) and $10 General Admission. It is a cash-only event. There will also be baked goods sold at the show in an effort to raise money for various local charities in their work at preventing violence against women and children.
All proceeds will be given to beneficiaries, including The Victims Resource Center, Caring Communities, Domestic Violence Resource Center, and Planned Parenthood Keystone. These beneficiaries support the goal of the “Vagina Monologues” event by increasing awareness of sexual assault as well as providing services to help those victims as well as their family members.
“In addition to it being an enjoyable performance, it raises money to give to the beneficiaries as it is an act of activism in helping women and girls,” said Brooke Giarratano, co-director of the event.
The monologues were written by playwright and feminist activist Eve Ensler in 1996 and will be presented this upcoming month. The main purpose of the show is intended to give special attention to a woman’s body and her sexuality, which are can be frequently ignored.
Thus, students who are passionate about women’s rights, rape, seuxal abuse, the different injustices women face all over the world will present dramatic monologues, addressing these different topics. Because of the variety of topics discussed within the monologues, students from different backgrounds can attend and help promote awareness. Students, faculty and staff at Wilkes University can all get involved to execute the play and its messages.
We have students, faculty and staff involved in the production, and it’s really exciting to see how everyone comes together,” said Caraballo.