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September Narrative Medicine Rounds

“The Apology,” a talk by playwright, activist and author Eve Ensler of “The Vagina Monologues”

For our September Narrative Medicine Rounds, we welcome Eve Ensler, the Tony Award winning playwright, activist, and author of the Obie Award winning theatrical phenomenon The Vagina Monologues, published in over 48 languages, performed in over 140 countries and recently heralded by The New York Times as one of the most important plays of the past 25 years, among numerous other honors. Ensler will speak about her new book The Apology, a powerful memoir where she revisits her childhood in an imagined letter from her abusive father. In a recent review, The Guardian's Arifa Akbar called The Apology a "profound, imaginative and devastating book."

Moderating the event will be Suzanne B. Goldberg, Columbia University Executive Vice President for University Life and Director, Center for Gender & Sexuality Law & Sexuality and Gender Law Clinic. In addition, La’Shawn Rivera, Executive Director, Sexual Violence Response & Rape Crisis/Anti-Violence Support Center, Columbia Health, will be at the talk to answer questions and provide information.

Ensler's plays include Lemonade, Extraordinary Measures, Necessary Targets, OPC, The Good Body (Broadway and National Tour), and Emotional Creature. Her most recent, Fruit Trilogy, debuted Off-Broadway in June 2018. Ensler’s books include Insecure At Last: A Political Memoir and The New York Times bestseller I Am An Emotional Creature. She recently finished performing In the Body of the World as a one-woman show, which she adapted for the stage from her critically acclaimed memoir to rave reviews at Manhattan Theatre Club after its debut at the American Repertory Theater. Film credits include The Vagina Monologues (HBO) and What I Want My Words to Do to You (Executive Producer, Winner of the Sundance Film Festival Freedom of Expression Award, PBS) and Mad Max: Fury Road (Consultant). In May 2019 Bloomsbury Publishing released her new book The Apology.

Ensler is the founder of V-Day, the 20-year-old global activist movement, which has raised over 100 million dollars to end violence to and against all women and girls (cisgender, transgender and gender non-conforming). She is also the founder of One Billion Rising, the largest global mass action to end gender-based violence in over 200 countries. She is a co-founder of the City of Joy, a revolutionary center for women survivors of violence in Bukavu, Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), along with Christine Schuler Deschryver and Dr. Denis Mukwege, and appeared – along with Ms. Deschryver and Dr. Mukwege – in the award-winning documentary film City of Joy  released globally as a Netflix Original in 190 countries.

Her writings regularly appear in The Guardian and TIME Magazine. She was named one of Newsweek’s “150 Women Who Changed the World” and The Guardian’s “100 Most Influential Women.” Ensler is the 2018 recipient of the Lucille Lortel Lifetime Achievement Award and the Lily Award. A survivor of violence, this author and activist has dedicated her life to ending violence against women and girls.

Narrative Medicine Rounds are monthly rounds on the first Wednesday of the month during the academic year hosted by the Division of Narrative Medicine in the Department of Medical Humanities and Ethics at Columbia University Irving Medical Center. These events are free and open to the public.

PLEASE NOTE: September Narrative Medicine Rounds will take place in the Alumni Auditorium, instead of the Faculty Club.