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March 30, 2017 1:44 PM EDT

The Vagina Monologues author Eve Ensler says that the United States is in a “profound emergency.”

In an interview with Emma Watson for Elle U.K.‘s April issue, the famed author discussed the current political climate and how things have — and haven’t — changed for women since the debut of her famed play in the late 1990s. She told Watson that the patriarchy continues to poses one of the biggest challenges to the U.S.

“I think what is sad is that the men in power still don’t understand that the liberation of women is their liberation as well as well, because they’re still hungering for domination,” Ensler told Watson. “That desire for domination, that predatory mind-set, is destroying our world in every respect.”

But Ensler says that she’s optimistic that things will finally change through feminist activism and resistance.

“We’re in a profound emergency in America. I think we had to hit rock bottom, so that we could address all the things that haven’t ever been dealt with,” she said. “This moment is a huge opportunity to deal with our history and to say – ‘We are going to reckon with our past, make restitutions, be guided and transformed by our mistakes, reset our course.'”

Read the full interview at Elle U.K.

 

Write to Samantha Cooney at samantha.cooney@time.com.

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