So, they have uncovered what they believe to be the oldest artistic representation of a human being ever found. And what do you know? Thirty-five thousand years ago, our ancestors were running around with my naked body, probably on a rope around their necks.
Now, granted, proto-me does also look a bit like a plucked chicken, but I trust you’ll overlook that.
Dr. J. took a class when we were in grad school in which the professor said that there is speculation that these figures were carved by women, hence the strange perspective, with the big breasts, big bellies, and tiny legs and hands and no heads. It’s as if you’re looking down at yourself and carving what you can see and what has the most prominence. It’s weird to think about for me, a woman who sits at a computer all day, because the thing of me I spend the most time looking at are my hands. Even now, when I’m typing, I can see them wiggling around down there. If I were carving what I saw when I looked down, it’d be all tits and hands and nothing else. It’s weird to think about just how sitting up all day how we do changes how we see ourselves.
The NYTimes article also alludes to some speculation about how these figurines may have had some shamanic purpose. I, at least, have this idea of shamans being primarily men, but that’s not actually true. When they find remains in Russia, they’re very often women. And there’s no reason to think our ancestors would have been any different.
I think, just looking, that at the least, they’re good luck charms–“as above, so below” being the guiding principal. If you think about how hard life was for our grandmothers 35,000 years ago, the idea of a woman who was so obviously well-fed, well-fucked, and able to feed and please others must have been an especially compelling person to want to emulate.