The Vagina Monologues, Eve Ensler

If you saw on a goodreads last week, I recently read The Vagina Monologues by Eve Ensler.

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The book kept popping up on my goodreads feed. People were commenting how much it impacted them, how fantastic it is and the like.

Before this, I heard about The Vagina Monologues, in an almost mythical way, as one of the key artistic pieces of feminism. It sounded powerful. It sounded intense. It sounded intimidating.

I dedicated this year to reading more feminist books to learn about issues talked about all the time, issues never talked about and subjects that society has told us to be uncomfortable about. I wanted to hear opinions that align with my own and opinions that differ.

I wanted to understand feminism, women’s rights and what it means to be a woman today in the most wholistic sense possible.

The Vagina Monologues, or what I’ve heard of it at least, made me uncomfortable.

It was exactly what I was looking for.

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I started the book on a lazy Sunday. Lounging around the house, elastic waistband clothes on, no makeup, smoothie in hand, sun streaming through the windows.

I finished it that day.

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I. Loved. It.

Yes, it can be intense. Yes, it can be intimidating. Yes, it certainly is powerful.

The monologues range from funny to heart breaking. From young girls to older women. From women of sexual assault to women giving birth.

I think the mythical feature that I talked about earlier comes from the fact that the play (Ensler toured around the country performing the play and it soon became a massive political movement) uses the word “vagina” on every page, multiple times. Not to mention it’s printed in large bold letters on the cover.

Vagina is a word that people don’t use. It almost feels taboo. Even more, people don’t talk about vaginas. It can be seen as shameful to do so. In response, Enlser began interviewing women about theirs and it soon became a revolution.

The monologues then went on to inspire the V-Day Movement to stop violence against women. If you get a newer copy of the play, there’s tons of information about it in the back.

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Honestly, I loved the Vagina Monologues. It’s a book that I think is so incredibly important and I would highly recommend it to everyone – both men and women.

I’m a big believer that discussing topics like this is the first step in bringing about change and, believe me, there’s no shortage of topics to discuss in The Vagina Monologues.

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Have you read TVM yet? What did you think and what was your favorite Monologue?

How to Be a Woman

One of my goals for 2017 was to read more feminist literature.

I think it’s a common misconception when people talk about feminism to say “this is what it is”  and “this is what a feminist looks like” but it’s not true. Feminism is made up of so many parts and each part is made of further parts. A person can be a feminist but have different opinions about varying details.

That’s why I think it’s important to read feminist books, to understand where other’s are coming from who have beliefs similar or different from yours. I love that moment when you believe something and have a difficult time articulating it, then read something that perfectly encompasses your thoughts!

Even more important, I enjoy reading the thoughts of people with different opinions of mine. To use that as an opportunity to question why you believe what you do and to strengthen your worldview by better understanding where other people are coming from.

A long intro to lead up to this: I read my first feminist book of the year and I loved it!

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If you haven’t read “How to be a Woman” by Caitlin Moran, I can’t recommend it enough!

Moran doesn’t shy away from controversial topics. In fact, she tackles them head on with a tongue in cheek humor that will make you continue reading until you come back to reality and realize you thought you’ve only been reading for 10 minutes but have actually been gone gone for double your allotted lunch break time.

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There were chapters that made my laugh out loud, chapters that I continued thinking about well after I put the book down and chapters I cringed when reading.

I agreed with many of the topics she wrote about and disagreed with some as well but used that disagreement to think through why I disagree and where my opinion came from.

I put some of my favorite quotes up on Goodreads but I’ll leave you with my favorite:

“It really is important you say these words out loud. “I AM A FEMINIST.” If you feel you cannot say it—not even standing on the ground—I would be alarmed. It’s probably one of the most important things a woman will ever say: the equal of “I love you,” Is it a boy or a girl?” or “No! I’ve changed my mind! I don’t want bangs!” – Caitlin Moran

If you haven’t read it, give it a try and let me know what you think!

A Room Without Books . . .

 

Is like a body without a soul. – Cicero

While some people love fashion because it tells you a lot about a person, I love bookshelves.

How they’re arranged, the knick knacks on it, what books they have – it all tells things about someone that you may not otherwise know.

Plus, my bookshelves are my favorite thing I own so I thought I’d give you a peak.

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I’m a bit of an organization freak – my shelves are arranged by genre then by author’s last name. Memoirs, fiction, books on Italy, mysteries, movie books, etc.

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So, tell me, are you a book magpie too?

One day (I’m determined) I will have as may bookshelves as Belle in Beauty and The Beast.

Do you have photos of your bookshelves? Post the link – I’d love to see it!