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January Book Review: Men Explain Things to Me by Rebecca Solnit (And Join the 2018 Women’s March)

I used to think feminists were insane. I actually thought they were overblown, volatile, and superfluous and – get this, “asking for it.” I thought they hated men. I thought they wanted to destroy men. And, as ignorant as a turnip, I thought feminists were Satanists. (Gulp. Did I actually admit that?)

It was what I was taught. Until, I decided to think for myself.

After years of life’s experiences and recovering from my indoctrination, I realized what I believed was not true. The truth is some men hate women, want to control them, and even silence them. Why else would they do what they do to women? Did you know that one in three women will be raped in her lifetime; a woman is beaten every nine seconds in the United States; and if that were not appalling enough, spouses are the leading cause of death of pregnant women (again in the U.S)? I came to the conclusion that I agree with author Rebecca Solnit: “We treat the physical assault and the silencing after as two separate things, but they are [the same], both bent on annihilation [of women].”

Men Explain Things to Me by Rebecca Solnit is a short compilation of seven brilliant essays covering how men literally explain things to women, the global injustice and violence women face, a compelling reiteration of the insidious cultural beliefs that make women invisible, thoughts on the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and its downfalls, an examination and commentary of twentieth century feminist Virginia Woolf’s take on mystery and ambiguity, the fight for marriage equality for the LGBTQ community, and a final essay on how men who get it know that feminism is not a scheme to deprive men but a campaign to liberate us all.

I found Solnit’s Men Explain Things to Me fascinating, engaging, and creative. Her writing is first rate. I highly recommend this reading to anyone interested in feminine theory, the violence women experience, or patriarchy.

A bit about the author, Rebecca Solnit:rebeccasolnit-Flickr_Shawn_Calhoun

Rebecca Solnit is a best-selling writer on various subjects. An activist, feminist, and historian, she is the author of twenty books about civil society, popular power, uprisings, art, indigenous history, environment, pleasure, social change and insurrection, politics, hope and disaster, memory, and most recently The Mother of All Questions. She is also a Harper’s contributing editor. Rebecca is a product of the California public education system from kindergarten to graduate school.

To learn more about Rebecca Solnit, or to purchase Men Explain Things to Me, visit her website, RebeccaSolnit.net.

Women's March

Women’s March, Washington DC, January, 2017

Join the Women’s March on January 20th or 21st, 2018, at a city near you. The mission of Women’s March is to harness the political power of diverse women and their communities to create transformative social change. Women’s March is a women-led movement providing intersectional education on a diverse range of issues and creating entry points for new grassroots activists and organizers to engage in their local communities through trainings, outreach programs, and events. Women’s March believes women’s rights are human rights and human rights are women’s rights. We must create a society in which women – including black women, native women, poor women, immigrant women, disabled women, Muslim women, lesbian queer and trans women – are free and able to care for and nurture their families in safe and healthy environments free from structural impediments. Download the full vision and principles of Woman’s March PDF here.

For more information, visit WomensMarch.com.

To join a march in your area on January 20th, visit PowertothePolls.com/anniversary.

Or, to join the march in Las Vegas on January 21st, visit PowertothePolls.com.

For further reading on the treatment of women, read my other blog, #MeToo.

© 2018, Vilma Reynoso, vilmareynoso.com

 


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February Book Review: The Vagina Monologues by Eve Ensler

Vagina MonologuesThe Vagina Monologues by Eve Ensler is a poignant and witty collection of informal interviews, stories and experiences related by women from all different walks of life celebrating female sexuality and bringing to light sexual violence against women. The book is hilarious, entertaining, poetic, at times jaw-dropping and admonishing. As an unexpected success, The Vagina Monologues has evolved into a play that is performed in cities across America and in hundreds of college campuses. Although this compilation of stories grew to become very successful performances nationwide, Eve Ensler admits that the idea of its success is not something she even imagined. In her words,” I was never a performer. It did not occur to me that I was actually performing the Vagina Monologues until I had been doing it for about three years. Before this point, I felt merely as if I were telling very personal stories that had been generously told to me. I felt strangely and at times, fiercely about these women and their stories.”

The brilliant winner of the Obie Award, The Vagina Monologues, has inspired the creation of V-day, a dynamic grassroots movement to stop violence against women worldwide. V-day creates awareness through events and the media and also raises funds (over $90 million so far) to support organizations working to ensure the safety of women everywhere. A big rally is held every Valentine’s day in cities worldwide. The vision of V-day is a civilization where women live in freedom and safety. V-day will continue until all the violence ends. When it does end, V-day will be renamed, “Victory Day.”

I recommend The Vagina Monologues to men or women in search of understanding female sexuality, the plight of women, and the unnecessary violence perpetuated towards women. I especially recommend this piece of literature to those who are afraid to read this book (perhaps by the title alone you have preconceived notions about the book; if that is the case, you especially need to read it or view a performance). And, of course, I recommend this book to the feminist or student exploring feminist politics and women’s issues. You will not be disappointed!

The Vagina Monologues will be performed in Denver at the Mercury Café on February 25th, 26th and 28th. Tickets are only $10.00. The volunteer actresses do not receive compensation and all money is raised for organziations helping to end violence against women.

Vagina M Performances

To purchase your seat, please visit: EventBrite.com.

A bit about the author, Eve Ensler:Eve ensler

Eve Ensler is a stand-alone visionary. She is an internationally bestselling author and an award-winning playwright. In addition to The Vagina Monologues, her theatrical works include, but are not limited to: Necessary Targets and The Good Bodies. She is author of Insecure at last, a political memoir, and I am an Emotional Creature, a New York Times best-seller, and In the Body of the World, her latest brilliant work.

Eve Ensler has won numerous awards for her plays and has been given two honorary doctorates. Eve’s mission is to end all violence towards women and girls worldwide. To join Eve in her mission, to learn more about this incredible woman, or to purchase a copy of The Vagina Monologues, visit her website, EveEnsler.org.

Vilma Reynoso, www.vilmareynoso.comInspiration for Creative Health. Abundant Life.

© 2015, Vilma Reynoso


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February Book Review: In the Body of the World by Eve Ensler

February Featured Book, In the Body of the World

As a lifetime lover and student of literature and as an author myself, there are no words to describe Eve Ensler’s absolutely stunning, courageous and profound book, In the Body of the World It is nothing less than a 21st century original masterpiece! Ensler’s prose is so poignant, original and raw; it will ignite the passion and fire in your own body and emotions. Her metaphors left me speechless, her story left me breathless, and her courage is incredible. This is by far the best-written memoir I have ever read! There are no words to explain the magnificence of this book!

In the Body of the World is a story about the author, Eve Ensler’s, battle and healing from very advanced uterine cancer. Using rich and original metaphors that leave you wanting more, Ensler combines her experience of being sexually abused as a child by her father, growing up with a distant, non-protective mother, her fight with cancer, her love and commitment to the ending of the genocide and brutal rape of millions of women in the Congo, and her disconnection to mother Earth to produce a very inspiring memoir. She brilliantly describes her dissociation from her emotions due to her tumultuous childhood and reconnects with her body, mind, emotions and soul as she heals from cancer. She writes, “Because I did not, could not, inhabit my body or the earth, I could not feel or know their pain.” The metaphorical weaving of this text is nothing less than first rate!

A bit about the author, Eve Ensler:

Eve Ensler is a visionary. She is an international bestselling author and an award-winning playwright. Her theatrical works include but are not limited to: The Vagina Monologues, Necessary Targets and The Good Bodies. She is author of Insecure at Last, a political memoir, and I am an Emotional Creature, a New York Times best-seller, which she has adapted for the stage as Emotional Creature.

Ensler is the founder of V-Day, the global movement to end violence against women and girls that occurs in various cities worldwide every Feb 14th, and which has raised over $90 million for local groups and activists and inspired the global action, “One Billion Rising.” Eve Ensler has won numerous awards for her plays and has been given two honorary doctorates.  Eve’s mission is to end all violence towards women and girls worldwide. To join Eve in her mission or to learn more about this incredible woman, visit her website, EveEnsler.org, or join her on V-Day, Feb 14th, every year, until all violence ends.

In the Body of the World is her latest book. To purchase a copy, visit her website: EveEnsler.org.

Vilma Reynoso, www.vilmareynoso.com. Inspiration for Creative Health. Abundant Life.

Copyright, 2014, Vilma Reynoso