To the women of Goshen College who participated in any part of Goshen Monologues, thank you. I believe that our campus is better for what happened on the Umble Center stage on Tuesday night. It inspired a campus.Whoever missed the Goshen Monologues performance (and based upon how packed the theater was, many did not), missed a night of women speaking up. They were funny, thought provoking, deeply personal and anonymous.
Any of the women sitting near me in Umble Center that night could have been the owner of one of the stories performed on stage. Perhaps that is why Lauren Treiber, the director, called the room a “holy place” before the performance began.
During the show and ongoing, those true and sincere stories came through as pure and untouched, something holy.
After the audience left that “holy place,” they could, at any time during a conversation about Goshen Monologues, be in the presence of the very owner of one of those stories. The anonymity creates a sense of accountability within our community and demands that we honor everyone’s story.
A community culture like that is one where people feel comfortable to speak up, and that is why I believe Goshen Monologues inspired this campus.
The Record reported during the past school year that GC students are willing to speak up about a lot of topics. Some spoke up during Sexual Violence Awareness Week, some for environmentally friendly endowment divestment, some shared a variety of opinions on GC Open Letter and some spoke up during the Black History Month convocation.
This week, The Record reports that our GC community has spoken up in the form of surveys regarding GC’s employment community standards; Rocio Diaz in the CIIE office is reaching out in the Latino community; male nursing majors share their experiences as gender minorities in their future profession; and a few students will return to their SST country, sharing the stories of Khmer people.
After this week, The Record will publish only one more issue before restarting in the fall, but even without a weekly newspaper to cover the happenings of campus, I still believe that students at GC will find ways to speak up.
Goshen Monologues was almost completely student-lead and -produced. That leaves me wondering what else this community will do and what it will say. If the Monologues were an example, we are obviously capable of incredible things. Surely, this campus will speak up for people – I wouldn’t expect anything less.