“She is no longer Eve Ensler, not since writing her memoir, The Apology, which excavated the dead father who violently abused her throughout her childhood. She is now V, joyously freed from the last vestige of that prescribed paternal identity.”
– Arifa Akbar, The Guardian
V is a Tony and Obie award-winning, New York Times best-selling playwright, author, and activist with plays and books published in over 48 languages and performed in over 140 countries. The founder of V-Day, the global grassroots movement to end violence against all women and girls (cisgender, transgender, those who hold fluid identities, and nonbinary people), and the planet, she is also the founder of One Billion Rising, the biggest mass action campaign to end violence against all women and girls in over 200 countries, and the co-founder of City of Joy, a revolutionary leadership center for Congolese women survivors of violence in Bukavu, DRC.
Photo credit: Paula Allen
Like millions of women, V (Formerly Eve Ensler) has been waiting much of her lifetime for an apology. Sexually and physically abused by her father, V has struggled her whole life from this betrayal, longing for an honest reckoning from a man who is long dead. After years of work as an anti-violence activist, she decided she would wait no longer; an apology could be imagined, by her, for her, to her. The Apology, written by V from her father’s point of view in the words she longed to hear, attempts to transform the abuse she suffered with unflinching truthfulness, compassion, and an expansive vision for the future.
V’s experience performing The Vagina Monologues inspired her to create V-Day, a global activist movement to end violence against all women (cisgender and transgender), those who hold fluid identities, nonbinary people, girls and the planet. She has devoted her life to stopping violence, envisioning a planet in which women and girls will be free to thrive rather than merely survive.
Photo credit: Paula Allen for V-Day
V’s latest TED Talk, The Profound Power of an Authentic Apology.
One of the most important plays of the past 25 years.
No recent hour of theater has had a greater impact worldwide.
In this triumph of artistry and empathy, Eve Ensler leaves us with a transformative question: what if the words we most long to hear from another can be located within ourselves? Navigating the rocky rapids between intimacy and annihilation, contrition and forgiveness, autonomy and interdependence, this is a book like no other. Few will emerge unchanged.
[Ensler] goes beyond simply recounting her experience with cancer—and an intimate, shocking and touching tale it is—to create a bold, political work that is as personal and global as her signature work…[She] presents…a thoughtfully laid-out narrative quilt, made up of engaging frankness, measured sentiment, smartly-timed revelations and disarming humor.
Leave it to Eve Ensler to get it right.
…a bold and provocative theme for Ms. Ensler…artistically introspective…bristles with enough tantalizing topics to fuel a year’s worth of symposiums…
…one of the most shatteringly brilliant books I have read. As soon as I finished it, I read it again, and again, and again (really).
Profound, imaginative and devastating book … with a moving power and poetry in the prose that rouses Arthur from his grave and holds him to account.
For those men—the famous and the unknown—The Apology is a blueprint of contrition.
Unforgettable…A story of stark, inspiring, often confrontational honesty. Ensler’s message is clear: We can face the worst life has in store for us and create, even in the face of terror, a life of meaning and joy.
Might be the most important book you read all year.
Eve Ensler can soar to Rabelaisian heights or move us with quiet compassion…. She may not save the world, but what other playwrights even think of trying?