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Hanlon's Razor: Never attribute to malice that which can be adequately explained by stupidity.

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

The 'V' Word

This is an interesting controversy. Manly because I think everyone's argument is standing on pretty firm ground.

A group of high school juniors decided that they wanted to do an excerpt reading of "The Vagina Monologues" at a school sponsored literary event. At the auditions, the faculty told them they will allow the students to read the excerpt as long as they did not use the word 'vagina'. The students agreed, but during the Friday night presentation the juniors emphasized the word by speaking it in unison whenever it appeared in the excerpt. The students were suspended.

Now as I said there are two interesting sides to this argument. The word vagina is a basic body part. While slightly taboo, there is no good reason it should be censored. "The Vagina Monologues" is an award winning play that celebrates feminism. In such a context, the use vagina is doubly more appropriate.

On the other hand, the students agreed to the restriction. They gave their word (pun intended) that they would make the changes asked of them. The students should have escalated the debate when the censorship occurred. Breaking their word and throwing it in the face of authority is damaging. It makes the whole incident look like a grab for publicity.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Boys have penises, girls have vaginas!

Penis Penis Penis, Vagina Vagina Vagina.

3/08/2007 10:40 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Instead of breaking their promise, the girls should have exaggerated the absurdity of the censorship by substituting something like "The part that girls have between their legs that we can't say because it makes certain people uncomfortable" every time the word "vagina" was used.

3/08/2007 11:13 PM  

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