Discussion: Social Change and Women’s Health and Well-Being

A young girl, aged 5, whose basic needs are met, experiences an uninhibited sense of self. Confidence and curiosity permeate her orientation to the world and her place in it. Her body is not a burden and her mind and spirit are united. Unfortunately, that confidence, positive body image, and positive sense of self can diminish as she grows up.

What are the factors that cause this perception of self to change over time? What images, words, laws, social norms, and experiences present barriers to maintaining a healthy sense of self? In this week’s Discussion, you explore connections between self-concept and health and well-being and how these connections reflect an awareness of and/or a need for social change.

To prepare for this Discussion:

  • Consider all that you have read of Ensler and Dove for social change themes related to women’s health and well-being.
  • Review the V-Day website in this week’s Learning Resources. Consider its mission, the four core beliefs, and its long-term mission, particularly with regard to women’s health and well-being.
  • What connections are possible between Ensler’s V-day (women’s empowerment day) and the idea of the next generation depicted in Dove’s poem?
  • How do body awareness and self-concept relate to social change?
  • What progress has been made across generations with regard to women’s health and well-being?

With these thoughts in mind:

By Day 3

Post a 2- to 3-paragraph analysis of how Ensler’s and Dove’s ideas provide insights into social change themes related to women’s health and well-being experience.

Reading Resources

https://www.ronnowpoetry.com/contents/dove/AfterReading.html

After Reading Mickey in the Night
Kitchen for the Third Time Before Bed

I’m the milk and the milk’s in me! . . . I’m Mickey!

My daughter spreads her legs
to find her vagina:
hairless, this mistaken
bit of nomenclature
is what a stranger cannot touch
without her yelling. She demands
to see mine and momentarily
we’re a lopsided star
among the spilled toys,
my prodigious scallops
exposed to her neat cameo.

And yet the same glazed
tunnel, layered sequences.
She is three; that makes this
innocent. We’re pink!
she shrieks, and bounds off.

Every month she wants
to know where it hurts
and what the wrinkled string means
between my legs. This is good blood
I say, but that’s wrong, too.
How to tell her that it’s what makes us–
black mother, cream child.
That we’re in the pink
and the pink’s in us.

Rita DoveCollected Poems: 1974-2004W.W. Norton, 2017.

V-Day. (n.d.0. Retrieved September 27, 2015, from http://www.vday.org/

 

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