Over the Rainbow - a site for survivors of any unwanted sexual activity
    From "Fuente Ovejuna" - Lope De Vega
A powerful speech from Laurencia who challenges the councillors of the town after they failed to stop her from being abducted and raped by the town's military tyrant. She calls the women of the town to arms to fight against the Commander and his men:
From Act 3 Scene 1
 
[Enter Laurencia, dishevelled]

Laurencia: Out of my way and let me in
 
To this all-wise, all-male Council meeting
 
You may not allow a woman to vote
 
But you can't stop her yelling.
 
Don't you know me, for God's sake?
 

Esteban: Yes, you are my daughter.

Juan Rojo: Laurencia!

Laurencia: Hard to recognise me, isn't it,
 
The state I'm in?

Esteban: My daughter!

Laurencia: Don't call me that.

Esteban: Why not?

Laurencia: For lots of good reasons -
 
The chief ones are these:
 
Because you let those soldiers take me
 
Without lifting a finger.
 
Because you left it to Frondoso
 
To protect me when that's a father's job
 
Till after the wedding night.
 
For, even if you buy a diamond ring
 
It isn't yours till it's on your finger.
 
So why did Frondoso have to run
 
The gauntlet of those vicious troups?

Esteban: They beat me too, you know, when I protested.

Laurencia: They did yes, I'm sory, yes they did, but these others -
 
When the Commander took me off
 
You stood and goggled like cowardly shepherds
 
While the wolf ran of with your lamb.
 
Oh, did they hold you back with swords?
 
Well, they held me down with violent abuse,
 
With violent threats, with violent hands,
 
With every kind of violence
 
So he could violate me.

Doesn't my hair tell its own story?
 
Can you see the blood on my skirt?
 
Can you see the bruises
 
Where they clutched me?
 
Where they hit me?
 
Can you see anything at all?

Call yourselves respected councillors?
 
Call yourselves my kinsmen?
 
Your guts should burst out of your bellies
 
To see Laurencia like this.

Fuesnte Ovejuna - the spring for sheep.
 
Sheep, that's all you are, a flock of sheep.
 
Sheepspring's the right name for this town.
 
Give me your weapons
 
You're a heap of stones.
 
A shelf of plaster idols,
 
A knot of cold-hearted snakes -
 
No, that's not fair on snakes -
 
A snake at least
 
Follows the hunters who steals its eggs
 
And lashes out, biting into their legs,
 
Injecting venom before they can reach
 
The safety of their saddles.

You gang of rabbits - stay down your holes!
 
Ancient cockerels, loafing round the dunghill
 
While other men screw your wives.
 
Give me your swords.
 
Take my sewing needles.

My God, do we women have to show you
 
How to smash those bastards
 
And wash yourself clean in a trough of their blood?

Stones! Rabbits! Sheep! Eunuchs!

Tomorrow we women will dress you up
 
In our best skirts and blouses.
 
We'll paint and powder you prettily
 
And lead you round the houses.

Listen, the Commander has made up his mind
 
To murder Frondoso at his headquaters.
 
Thre'll be no trial. There'll be no verdict.
 
And maybe his body will be found in the river.
 
And maybe his body will never be found.

And when the Commander takes the rest of you,
 
One by one, week by week, and strings you up
 
While your fellow-councillors hold secret meetings -
 
I'll be laughing my headoff - little boys!
 
O when he's killed all the men of this town
 
Then the age of Amazons will return
 
And women will show the world what courage means.

   
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