For the last episode of the series, I speak with V (formerly known as Eve Ensler) – distinguished American playwright, performer and feminist, whose work and activism has positively impacted the lives of millions of women and people around the world.
Renowned for her infamous play, The Vagina Monologues, a global phenomenon that has been published in 48 languages and performed in over 140 countries, V is also the author of The Apology, the New York Times bestseller I Am an Emotional Creature, the highly praised In the Body of the World, and her most recent book, Reckoning, which was just recently published.
In 1998, V launched V-day, a global activist movement to end violence against women and girls, which has successfully raised over $100 million for local anti-violence groups and supported more than 13,000 community-based programs. Having founded One Billion Rising, the largest global mass action to end gender-based violence in over 200 countries, V is also the co-founder of the City of Joy, a revolutionary centre for women survivors of violence in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, alongside Christine Schuler Deschryver and 2018 Nobel Peace Prize winner Dr. Denis Mukwege.
V’s groundbreaking work has earned her many accolades including the Isabelle Stevenson Award at the 2011 Tony Awards, and she has been named among Newsweek’s ‘150 Women Who Changed the World,’ and the Guardian’s ‘100 Most Influential Women’.
Through her work and activism, V continues to shape the dialogue around social justice, women’s rights, and our relationship with and as part of nature, and her creativity and fierce commitment to improving the lives of women worldwide continues to impact and inspire new generations of activists and artists.
- V highlights the collective grief, trauma, and sorrow felt worldwide due to recent events, including the impact of violence and conflict on children and civilians.
- We delve into the origins of violence, focusing on systemic issues like occupation, racism, and colonialism. V emphasises the importance of understanding and addressing the root causes of violence to create a more peaceful world.
- Personal and political reckoning, the process of introspection and societal reflection prompted by the pandemic and recent social justice movements, stressing the need for honest examination of past actions and systemic inequalities.
- How moving towards pain, rather than avoiding it, can open doors towards healing, transformation and change.
- The role of genuine apology in reconciliation, and the healing of personal and collective wounds.
- Our relationship with the Earth, our disconnection from nature and how reconnecting with the natural world can foster healing, compassion, and a sense of belonging.
- Art, creativity and imagination as catalysts for change, and the importance of artistic expression in social movements.
- The importance of standing together in solidarity, supporting each other’s voices and struggles, and the power of collective action in addressing global challenges.
- Personal growth, empowerment, and the journey to find and use one’s voice for advocacy and change.
- Finally, we explore a vision for a future characterised by equality, justice, compassion, and ecological harmony.