I am pondering the power of one woman writer to make a difference in the world. Are words truly mightier than the proverbial sword?
Eve Ensler, the creator of The Vaginal Monologues, is continuing her work with rape victims in the Congo. Her organization V-Day, in conjunction with Unicef, has organized a platform for women in over 90 villages to come and speak about what has happened to them. They have given these women a voice, a venue to use words to shape this horrific experience, forcing men, the officials and the international community to hear and acknowledge and act so that irrevocable change can occur.
For more information on V-Day:
Here are Eve Ensler’s impressions after a visit to the Congo in August of 2007:
The Globe and Mail published an article on the conflict Saturday. Sadly, little has changed since 2007:
October 18, 2008
KANIOLA, DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF CONGO — In Kaniola, they have coined a new term: reviolé.
At the Catholic parish office, on the cramped and crowded ledger pages where they list rape victims, at least half the names appear more than once: women who have been victims of sexual enslavement or public gang rape by rebel groups or the Congolese army; women, 30 in an average month, who have come to the parish to get help reaching a hospital to repair their injuries; women who have been healed, come home and a year or two or three later, been gang-raped again, during another small surge of the conflict.
The youngest victim on the list is 6. The oldest is 74.
To read more: