Vagina Monologues is back in Ateneo de Manila University in 2010 after it was banned by Dr. Anna Miren Intal in 2002
March 5, 2010 12 Comments
After my 7:30-8:30 p.m. Ps 121 class last Wednesday, my female student told me that the Vagina Monologues will be shown at the Cervini Field at 6 or 6:30 p.m. that day, just after our Physics long test. The play is under the direction of Missy Maramara of the Ateneo English Department (see Petrablog). This is for the culmination of the Ateneo Women’s Week. She is excited to watch the play.
I told her that Vagina Monologues should be banned in the Ateneo, because Ateneo is a Catholic University. Why should the play be shown in Ateneo when it glorifies the sexual liberation of a woman by having sex with a lesbian. Another student of mine told me that that his Theology teacher also believes in the same way as I do. I should have asked the teacher’s name so that I can send him a note of thanks for teaching rightly.
In the year 2002, the film was banned by Dr. Anna Miren Intal, the Dean of the Loyola Schools. Here is an account someone in favor of Vagina Monologues in Ateneo which I got from Pinoy Exchange:
Dr. Anna Miren Intal, Ph.D. is the Dean for the entire Loyola Schools. Obviously, Dean Intal is a female. She took her Ph.D. in Princeton, I believe so she supposedly has . She’s the end-all and be-all of the entire college, and she made her powers felt as she
>effectively derailed the project.
In a meeting with Rabbi and a co-Theatre Arts Major (Missy), Dr. Intal expressed her apprehension and objection about the project because (I’m paraphrasing here) “It goes against the thrust and vision of our Jesuit institution.” Furthermore, “It might destroy the moral fabric of the Ateneo…” (Jeez, you should hear me reinact this LIVE for the “lamb-ish” tone she uses!) When asked if she finds the word “Vagina” objectionable, she just laughs and says “That too…” Missy asked her what in the script she finds objectionable, Dr. Intal says, “To tell you the truth, I haven’t really read the script, but I’ve seen a lot of Broadway plays that are more tasteful…” Rabbi and Missy press her to reconsider, so she gives in a little. She says she’d “forward it to the THEOLOGY Department for moral evaluation.”
My friends went to their professors (to name a few, Ma’am Benny Santos, Sol Reyes, Fr. Nic Cruz, Dr. Ricky Abad) to ask for their recommendations for the staging of Vagina. They got it. Rabbi even went further by getting recommendations from FORDHAM Universtiy (another JESUIT institution in New York City), DePaul University, and some other universities abroad. Locally, he was able to get a a recommendation from a nun who happens to have a Ph.D. in Theology and who happens to be the President of St. Scholastica’s College (one of the more conservative colleges in the country). He wrote a letter to Dr. Intal about how universities like the University of the Philippines, De La Salle University, the University of Sto. Tomas, and St. Scholastica’s have agreed to stage Vagina in their campuses. Unfortunately, Dr. Intal did not budge.
She said she had to consider the “tens and thousands of students, parents, alumni who also have a stake in the Ateneo,” and that she doesn’t want “to be responsible for the thousands of people who will flock to the Ateneo in PROTEST” of the staging of Vagina. “I have to think like an administrator.” She even said that she doesn’t want the name “Ateneo” to be linked in the project in any way. She said that the administration has the trademark “Ateneo” and that she wouldn’t allow it to be used. She even said she didn’t want the students involved to say that they were Ateneans. (It was then she hinted of a ‘lawsuit’ if they did.)
How lame is that???!!
I don’t know how this Vagina Monologues got permission to be shown again in Ateneo. Missy Maramara who was only a Theatre Arts major in 2002 is now an Ateneo Faculty. The quote is revealing: it shows how far the Jesuit universities have been stricken by this Vagina Monologues malady. And even the top Catholic Schools in the Philippines as well. The Vagina Monolgues has seduced the most brilliant minds . Woe to those who call light as darkness and darkness light! As Christ said, if the light in you is darkness, how great must that darkness be!
I admire Dr. Miren Intal. I was able to join her for lunch once in the cafeteria years ago, long after she ceased to be the Dean of the Loyola Schools. She is a soft-spoken lady, yet principled and strong. May there be more faculty and administrators like her who defends Ateneo’s authentic Jesuit and Catholic tradition.