Connect with us

All Articles

We Forgot About Our Vaginas

Is that you, Bey?

Last night and continuing tonight, V-Day at Barnard College premiered The Vagina Monologues featuring an all self-identified women of color cast. The announcement of the choice to use a cast of “self-identified women of color” proved a bit controversial this fall. A Bwogger with a vagina went out to the opening night last night to see what all the fuss was about. The show will close tonight with a performance at 10:30pm in the Roone Arledge Auditorium. See the Facebook event for more info.

I had no idea what to expect coming into the show as I purposefully tried to keep myself from searching for some background. I was correct in my general thoughts on the show—it would be about women and vaginas. However, the show went beyond the posters next to Well-Women, or the awkward conversation your RA tries to start every semester about how we need to become “clitorally vagenius.” The Vagina Monologues takes a deep look at something we keep forgetting: women have vaginas and we can’t ignore them.

There isn’t much to talk about in terms of the normal theatre review. Of course there was lighting and whatnot, but there was no detailed set or perfectly hemmed costumes. Instead, this show was truly about not even the actors, but the words they were saying. The show made sure that the stars were the monologues. However, it would be hard to ignore the intensity and heart that came with the female performers for each monologue, including stories by real women about issues women have continued to sweep under the rug to not “offend” anyone. Not enough can be said about the monologues in general; they are by far the most powerful words that will be said on a Columbia stage this year.

The production was directed and produced by Dorian Barnwell CC ’15 and Victoria Durden BC ’15 as well as produced by Anita Warner BC. In The Vagina Monologues section of the show, one of the performer’s* rendition of “My Angry Vagina” earned more than enough snaps from the audience, including when she perfectly described the hatred that comes with having to stick dry cotton up your vagina once a month. Another outstanding performance came from Evy Kenya Exime CC ’17, who performed “The Little Coochie Snorcher That Could.” An actor prefaced the monologue with a trigger warning and prepared the audience for what was a breathtaking and difficult story. On the side of “The Snatchchats,” Joya Ahmad SEAS ’15 wrote several of the poems, including the passionate “An Open Letter to the Working Girls of New York,” which Ahmad performed herself.

I know we can’t ignore the controversy that the choice to cast all women of color generated. Almost every ethnicity was represented. To be honest, I forgot it was a thing. Of course much of the stories, particularly the monologues in the feature “The Snatchchats” following the show, did focus on issues pertaining to women of color in this country, but for much of the actual Vagina Monologues it was not focused on the race of the performer. Looking back on the performance, it was a nice change from the white washed casts that typically grace the Columbia stage.

The Barnard/Columbia V-Day puts on the monologues every year, and every year it is deservedly praised. We should all be very proud to be classmates with the women that presented these monologues.

*This performer requested to not be named in this review for personal reasons.

Poster via Facebook Event

Write a comment

Your email address will not be published.



  • cc 17 says:

    @cc 17 I’m sorry but almost every ethnicity was not represented that will never be the case that’s not what ethnicity means. You could use the word race, because there were certainly people from asian, latina, black, and (I believe but I’m not totally confident) indigenous backgrounds. But race is bs anyway so whatever.

    Point is there’s way more to this and this article says absolutely nothing to the wonderful and powerful performances given by so many of those women the last couple of nights.

    Bwog, do better– at least say something meaningful and if you’re going to refer to the controversy at least say something about the result.

  • Bwog says:

    @Bwog Shut up. Think about what you are doing and why you are doing it.

  • man says:

    @man I feel offended that men don’t have the penis dialogs

  • Anonymous says:

    @Anonymous It’s Rihanna in the poster. Just saying.

  • still confused says:

    @still confused also not all women have vaginas/not everyone with a vagina is a woman

    1. Anonymous says:

      @Anonymous SAY IT.

  • Annoyed says:

    @Annoyed “Looking back on the performance, it was a nice change from the white washed casts that typically grace the Columbia stage.”

    As someone in the Columbia theater scene, I’m kind of offended by this constant perception that we’re all white, suburban, upper middle class people that went through some privileged performing arts educational system. Why don’t people ever come and see the shows they’re criticizing for being “too white?” There’s an entirely diverse group of people in the cast and crew of several productions. The most talented people get cast, and then these news organizations love to cause drama by pointing out that we didn’t have enough SEAS or GS students, or transgender Native American Pacific Islanders. Can you just watch and enjoy the hard work of their peers?

    Columbia students love to and complain about everything, but why do you always have to criticize the efforts of other students and play affirmative action backseat directing instead of protesting things that matter within the administration?

    1. BC '14 says:

      @BC '14 lol every theater meeting I’ve gone to was wonderbread white

      remember how there was an all-white production of the wiz a few years back? lol

      1. Anonymous says:

        @Anonymous that show was a two-woman parody that only used like 25 lines of dialogue from the wiz and ran an hour long

        it was making fun of how whitebread everything at this school is

    2. confused says:

      @confused “the theater community at columbia is diverse, but I’m going to mention trans and/or indigenous identities as if they’re imaginary and also poo on anyone who supports affirmative action”

      so basically what you’re saying is “we are as white and unwelcoming as you say we are”

    3. Anonymous says:

      @Anonymous weather machine

    4. Lauren says:

      @Lauren You’re right. Let’s just ignore blatant practices of exclusion within these settings and eat our crumbs off the floor happily.

  • Have Your Say

    What should Bwog's new tagline be?

    View Results

    Loading ... Loading ...

    Recent Comments

    >Mrs. Rand is that you? Says the individual who got to have a job and make a living during the (read more)
    Everything We Know About Columbia’s Reopening Plan (As Of 7/28/2020)
    August 3, 2020
    You mean Cuomo's nursing home patients. All well into their 80s or morbidly obese. Also hospitals in the suburbs and (read more)
    Everything We Know About Columbia’s Reopening Plan (As Of 7/28/2020)
    August 3, 2020
    I respect Obama and I have blog in instagram about him. Sometimes I get insta likes from I just (read more)
    BREAKING: Obama to Speak at Barnard’s Commencement
    August 3, 2020

    Comment Policy

    The purpose of Bwog’s comment section is to facilitate honest and open discussion between members of the Columbia community. We encourage commenters to take advantage of—without abusing—the opportunity to engage in anonymous critical dialogue with other community members. A comment may be moderated if it contains:
    • A slur—defined as a pejorative derogatory phrase—based on ethnicity, race, gender, sexual orientation, ability, or spiritual belief
    • Hate speech
    • Unauthorized use of a person’s identity
    • Personal information about an individual
    • Baseless personal attacks on specific individuals
    • Spam or self-promotion
    • Copyright infringement
    • Libel
    • COVID-19 misinformation