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I attended the Vagina Monologues last week. This is the fourth year in a row that I’ve seen it; I’m a big fan of the ideas behind it, of the play itself, and of the activism it entails. This year is also the tenth anniversary of the play; you can read more about it here.
One of my favorite sketches is “The Woman Who Loved to Make Vaginas Happy.” It’s about some woman who used to be a lawyer, but is now a sex worker who works exclusively with women because she likes the way they moan. In the sketch, she describes and mimics different types of moans. At one point, “Jewish,” “black,” and “Irish Catholic” women get their own moans.
While Muslim women are present in other sketches depending on the year (almost every year, “My Vagina Was My Village” is included; this sketch is about Bosnian women who were systematically raped by Serbs. In past years, sketches about Iraqi women and Afghan women have been included when the Monologues’ spotlighted these women’s stories), I always feel a little bit disappointed that we’re not included in the moaning sketch.
Even when Muslim women are included, you can bet the skit revolves around war conflicts and war-related acts of violence against women. These are important issues and they need to come to light. But I know there are Muslim women out there who have positive encounters with sexuality in general and their own sexuality specifically. That’s important, too.
Anyway, back to the moaning skit. The Jewish and black women get a “Oy, vey” and an “Awwww, shiiiiiiiiiiiiiiit,” stereotypical though they may be.
The Irish Catholics get a “Ohhhhhhhh, Jesus…Mary…JOSEPH!!!” coupled with a frantic cross.
But we don’t get anything! Not a
People are sexual, and we are reminded of that we as women are sexual all the time with all that jazz about nine parts of desire and covering up our beauty, blah, blah, blah. But when it comes to the Vagina Monologues, we don’t need to hide our light under a bushel.