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After 20 Years, ‘The Vagina Monologues’ Remains A Call To Action

When Eve Ensler first unleashed a string of feminist, body-positive, pro-sex monologues onto a New York City stage in 1996, the themes resonated with many women. “The Vagina Monologues” went on to have a successful off-Broadway run, an HBO adaptation and an annual performance slot on college campuses around the country, and even the world. They also spawned a global anti-violence movement called V-Day, which opened a chapter in Raleigh in 2016. 

The monologues are updated yearly to reflect the times and the shifting foci of the women’s movement. They have weathered criticism to remain relevant, but still struggle to expand the audience to men.

Host Frank Stasio talks about the pieces and their still-powerful messages with V-Day Raleigh organizer Alex Matsuo; Loni Price, producer of its 2018 production of “The Vagina Monologues; and actor Judy McCord. V-Day Raleigh’s production of “The Vagina Monologues” is on stage at North Raleigh Arts & Creative Theatre at 8 p.m. on Feb. 13, 14 and 15. Other V-Day events including performances of “The Vagina Monologues” are scheduled around the state.

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Jennifer Brookland is the American Homefront Project Veterans Reporting Fellow. She covers stories about the military and veterans as well as issues affecting the people and places of North Carolina.
Longtime NPR correspondent Frank Stasio was named permanent host of The State of Things in June 2006. A native of Buffalo, Frank has been in radio since the age of 19. He began his public radio career at WOI in Ames, Iowa, where he was a magazine show anchor and the station's News Director.