“But even then I won’t feel beautiful.”
This line written by Eve Ensler and performed in the Women’s Center’s performance of “Emotional Creatures” by Eve Ensler this past Friday summarizes the feelings of women across the world. As women, we are subconsciously taught that in order to be valuable we need to be beautiful. However, Friday’s performance as a part of Love Your Body Week emphasized that this does not have to be the case—women should love their bodies for all that they are capable of and not just what they look like.
This past week marked another annual Love Your Body week sponsored by the Women’s Center. The week focused on the importance of body positivity and loving oneself. Various events took place and the performance of “Emotional Creatures” wrapped up the week on Friday.
The week kicked off with a Polaroid photo booth on Nov. 4, hosted by Student Initiatives and the Council on Students with Disabilities from the Undergraduate Government of Boston College, partnering with the Women’s Center. This event involved a photo booth with free polaroids and digital pictures from the communications team, which were posted on social media throughout the week.
Lauren Schadt, MCAS ’20, spoke about the event’s outcome.
“The Love Your Body Week photobooth turned out great!” Schadt said. “We were hoping the event would be a fun way to kick-off and publicize the Women’s Center Love Your Body Week. The Women’s Center volunteers were so great and the event was a fun and casual opportunity for people to celebrate what makes them feel beautiful.”
Boston College Charity Water also teamed up with the Women’s Center for Love Your Body Week with their “Women and Water Event.” The event displayed posters about how clean water effects the lives of women throughout the world. Women at the event were then able to write down how water makes them feel beautiful. Then attendees had the opportunity to receive face masks.
Love Your Body Week culminated on Friday with a performance of the works of Eve Ensler: “Emotional Creatures” directed by Debbie Adoaba, MCAS ‘21 and Ally Lardner, ESOL ’21. The show included various monologues performed by different women and finished with a final unifying ensemble performance.
Lardner was so thankful to Adoaba for asking her to join her in working on this piece.
“The monologues and dialogues that Eve Ensler writes are endlessly authentic to the experience of being a woman,” Lardner said.
Eve Ensler also wrote The Vagina Monologues, a production that the Women’s Center has previously put on. Lardner commented on how this performance was very different than the shows produced on Robsham main stage and the Bonn studio because students of various acting abilities or no prior acting experience were able to audition and be a part of it.
“I thought all of the performers did an amazing job of living and breathing their characters, despite level of prior acting experience,” Lardner continued. “[This performance] gives non-performers the ability to explore their identities onstage.”
Alyssa Pullin, MCAS ’20, spoke about how, as someone with no prior experience acting at BC, being a part of this production was really exciting for her. After receiving an email from the Women’s Center about the performance, she was drawn to audition because she hadn’t realized there were so many exciting events happening.
“I found this opportunity to do the works of Eve Ensler and I thought, why not? I can do this. I should try it because I’ve never done anything like this before. I’m so glad that I did it and I learned a lot from these wonderful ladies,” Pullin said.
Julienne Martinez, MCAS ’21, who performed a monologue said, “After performing in The Vagina Monologues last year, I was really excited to be a part of another performance highlighting women’s perspectives and their learning to love their bodies, despite what might have been taught.”
As Martinez mentioned, the monologues explored different perceptions of what it means to love your body across racial, cultural, gender, and age lines.
“I’m super excited for people to hear these monologues and I hope people leave Friday night with newfound understandings, and that it helps them love their own bodies,” Martinez added.
Cat Tobia MCAS ’20 said, “I decided to try-out because I love using theatre as a tool to talk about important issues in our world. Stories are how we spread compassion and make real change. I’m also excited for the final uniting monologue; it feels really powerful to be a part of.”
Through this performance, both the audience and the actors were able to learn more about themselves and gain a deeper sense of loving their bodies—but also of loving others around them despite differences.