Menstrual Matters exhibition to end period shame


Women and girls often face period shaming which refers to the stigma and discrimination faced by people who menstruate. Photo: Pixabay

There will be a Menstrual Matters exhibition at Piyadasa Gallery in the Faculty of Creative Arts (formerly the Cultural Centre), Universiti Malaya in Kuala Lumpur, to generate more awareness about menstruation among the general public.Organised by the University Malaya Feminism Club (UMFC) with the support of volunteers from the Social Administration and Visual Arts departments, the purpose of the exhibition is to debunk period myths, end period shame, educate and create awareness about period poverty, provide the medical facts, and display menstrual kits.

"Through the Menstrual Matters exhibition, we aim to destigmatise menstruation, address the issues of period poverty, and provide a space for women's empowerment," says UMFC president Chin Jes Weng.

We aim to destigmatise menstruation, address the issues of period poverty, and provide a space for women's empowerment, says Chin. Photo: Chin Jes WengWe aim to destigmatise menstruation, address the issues of period poverty, and provide a space for women's empowerment, says Chin. Photo: Chin Jes Weng

"There are many period myths in society, including the ones which say 'we mustn't wash our hair during menstruation' and 'we can't exercise when we have our period'. Some are deeply rooted in tradition, and these myths will also be discussed during the exhibition," says Chin.

Period shaming – which refers to the stigma and discrimination faced by people who menstruate – makes women and girls embarrassed when they're menstruating, she says.

"And this not only affects them emotionally, but also physically and socially. Some girls decide not to attend PE classes, to skip school, or even to drop out from school totally just to avoid being shamed by their male classmates," she adds.

The Menstrual Matters exhibition takes place on May 9 and 10, from 10am to 5pm. Photo: Chin Jes WengThe Menstrual Matters exhibition takes place on May 9 and 10, from 10am to 5pm. Photo: Chin Jes Weng

The Menstrual Matters exhibition comprises six zones: Introducing period myths, period shaming, period poverty, related medical facts, menstrual kits, and a pain simulator challenge.

During the two days, over 20 artwork on the topic will be displayed.

"The artwork focuses on educating people about menstrual matters, and will touch on topics such as period shame, period myths, period poverty and related medical facts," says Chin.

The free exhibition is targeted towards university students but also open to the public, and will take place on May 9 and 10, from 10am to 5pm each day. Free gifts will be given to the first 65 participants on each day. There will also be special event merchandise for sale.

There are many harmful period myths that need to be debunked. Photo: FreepikThere are many harmful period myths that need to be debunked. Photo: Freepik


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