Founded in 1974, the Women’s Center was established to:
Dismantle, from a feminist perspective, all forms of oppression, including but not limited to those based on ability, age, class, ethnicity, gender, race, and sexual orientation.
Advocate for an equitable environment free from violence and harassment based on gender, race, and sexual orientation.
Create an anti-racist, non-sexist, queer-affirmative space where all people can feel valued and safe.
Facilitate and strengthen connections among people across lines of difference through programming and educational campaigns.
Integrate an appreciation of Women's Gender and Multicultural Studies across the disciplines.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Pro-Choice Theatre at Ramapo!

Next Tuesday, The Women's Center is working with Professor Mandy Restivo to bring the play Words of Choice to Ramapo! Words of Choice is a play that depicts twelve short scenarios of individuals, couples, and families facing the decision of whether or not an abortion is an appropriate or available option to them. Some stories are empowering; others are heartbreaking. All are very realistic depictions of struggles that occur in the lives of hundreds every day. Tickets are free at Roadrunner Central! Come out and see this performance!

This play, in my opinion, perfectly embodies the purpose of the arts in social justice. It takes the creative energies of a few people and uses them to channel the anger that many activists feel into a work of art more palatable to the public. A play about reproductive justice, if well publicized, could have just as much of an impact as a rally would. In fact, I would say artistic means of protest and activism are more well-recieved in general. If a person feels passionately about issues of social justice and possesses some level of creativity, I believe artistic forms of outreach can raise awareness and rally folks to the cause.

A few recent developments on the topic of reproductive justice include the withdrawal of sponsorship from Planned Parenthood by the Susan G. Komen foundation. Despite the other services offered by Planned Parenthood, all funds were withdrawn because one of the recently appointed board members identifies as pro-life and does not support access to abortion. Read more about this event in the blog Lexi posted yesterday!

The national initiative, Repeal Hyde Art Project, will introduce the first Day of Action on February 10. This encourages college students and other groups dedicated to social justice to color birds (the original art idea) and display them in an art installation in public. Photographs of the installations will be sent to representatives to encourage them to cease reinstating the Hyde Amendment annually. Learn more about the initiative at the Repeal Hyde Art Project website.

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