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V-Day at Davidson Raises $10,000 to Ease Oppression of Women

March 2, 2001
Contact: Bill Giduz 704/894-2244 or bigiduz@davidson.edu

V-day cast picture
Among the forty-six person cast were (standing, l-r) Crystal High, Laura Puckett, College Communications Director Meg Kimmel, Dean Rusk Program Assistant Irene Middleton, Kristine Grayson, Andra Whitt, Anna Jensen, Meredith Beatty, Amanda Lanier, (sitting, clockwise from center) Professor and Chair of Political Science Mary Thornberry, Alison Shea, Laura Waddle, Cari Lentzsch, Nikki Thomas, and Sara Romeis.

A cast of forty-six female students, faculty, and staff at Davidson came together on February 16, 18, and 19, to perform The Vagina Monologues. The production marked Davidson's first participation in the annual V-Day College Initiative, which invites colleges and universities to mount productions of The Vagina Monologues on or around Valentine's Day to raise money and awareness about violence against women. The Davidson production raised $10,000, which will go to United Family Services' shelter for battered women and victim's assistance, and Planned Parenthood.

An award-winning play written by Eve Ensler, The Vagina Monologues is based on interviews the playwright conducted with hundreds of women of various ages and backgrounds. The collection of conversations, confessions and "vagina facts" explores questions often pondered but seldom asked, while empowering women to take back the language with which they discuss their bodies. The play was directed at Davidson on the Love Auditorium stage by sophomore Bill Neville, and featured women with varying degrees of theater experience.

Inspired by the vision of a world where women are free from the threat of violence, the worldwide V-Day movement began on February 14, 1998, with a gala event in New York City that featured performances by renowned actresses including Whoopi Goldberg, Glenn Close, Susan Sarandon, and Calista Flockhart. In its three-year history, V-Day has raised over a million dollars for grassroots organizations fighting violence worldwide.

Davidson was among 231 colleges and universities that participated in the V-Day 2001 College Initiative this year. Other North Carolina participants were Warren Wilson College, UNC Chapel Hill, Duke University and Guilford College.

Davidson is a highly selective independent liberal arts college for 1,600 students. Since its establishment in 1837, the college has graduated 23 Rhodes Scholars and is consistently ranked among the top liberal arts colleges in the country by U.S. News and World Report magazine. Davidson recently launched "Let Learning Be Cherished," a $250 million campaign in support of student financial assistance, academic resources, and community life.

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