By the Gods!

Let's get Mythical.

125 notes

yogior:

bythegods:

D’Sonoqua
Also spelled “Dzunukwa” or “Tsonokwa” is a giantess in the mythology of Kwakwaka’wakw peoples, who live in the Pacific Northwest, mainly on the BC coast, Northern Vancouver Island, and the Queen Charlotte Sound. 
D’Sonoqua was seen as a bringer of wealth worthy of respect and veneration, but also had a dark side, and was known to stuff children into her basket, to be carried away to her caves and eaten. She has a terrifying call, a “Hu!” or “Oo-oo-oo-oeo!”, which can be easily mistaken for the sound of the wind rustling through the cedar trees. The renown of her voice is such that images of her nearly always show pursed red lips, eternally calling out.
The above image of D’Sonoqua is by Emily Carr, that great artist of my home, Vancouver Island. She was a tremendous admirer of First Peoples’ art, and a ferocious critic of the missionaries and politicians who sought to displace our elder brothers and sisters on this continent.

Dzunukwa was both a powerful ally and a fearsome foe if you should cross their path.
One thing I feel an obligation to point out whenever I see anything relating to the Kwakwaka’wakw is that they are a living culture. Often they are portrayed as being lost or dead in museums, but they, like the other First Nations of Canada, have refused to be kept down, often despite society and the Canadian Government’s attempts. While I am not of First Nation decent, the art and religion of the Kwakwaka’wakw has spoken to me since a very young age, and I it was instrumental in my development into the person I am today. I was very lucky to have the privilege to visit U’mista Cultural Centre this summer, which is the current repository of Kwakwaka’wakw culture, as well as visit many of the ancient village sites along the west cost. I would suggest everyone visit the centre, especially if you are interested in other people, cultures, religions, and mythology. You will leave both inspired and humbled by the stories of a people who fought for their rights to have their culture recognized and respected. 
Please take a second to reblog this post so that more people can learn the the incredible story of U’mista and the Kwakwaka’wakw who struggled to restore their cultural history. 

yogior:

bythegods:

D’Sonoqua

Also spelled “Dzunukwa” or “Tsonokwa” is a giantess in the mythology of Kwakwaka’wakw peoples, who live in the Pacific Northwest, mainly on the BC coast, Northern Vancouver Island, and the Queen Charlotte Sound. 

D’Sonoqua was seen as a bringer of wealth worthy of respect and veneration, but also had a dark side, and was known to stuff children into her basket, to be carried away to her caves and eaten. She has a terrifying call, a “Hu!” or “Oo-oo-oo-oeo!”, which can be easily mistaken for the sound of the wind rustling through the cedar trees. The renown of her voice is such that images of her nearly always show pursed red lips, eternally calling out.

The above image of D’Sonoqua is by Emily Carr, that great artist of my home, Vancouver Island. She was a tremendous admirer of First Peoples’ art, and a ferocious critic of the missionaries and politicians who sought to displace our elder brothers and sisters on this continent.

Dzunukwa was both a powerful ally and a fearsome foe if you should cross their path.

One thing I feel an obligation to point out whenever I see anything relating to the Kwakwaka’wakw is that they are a living culture. Often they are portrayed as being lost or dead in museums, but they, like the other First Nations of Canada, have refused to be kept down, often despite society and the Canadian Government’s attempts. While I am not of First Nation decent, the art and religion of the Kwakwaka’wakw has spoken to me since a very young age, and I it was instrumental in my development into the person I am today. I was very lucky to have the privilege to visit U’mista Cultural Centre this summer, which is the current repository of Kwakwaka’wakw culture, as well as visit many of the ancient village sites along the west cost. I would suggest everyone visit the centre, especially if you are interested in other people, cultures, religions, and mythology. You will leave both inspired and humbled by the stories of a people who fought for their rights to have their culture recognized and respected. 

Please take a second to reblog this post so that more people can learn the the incredible story of U’mista and the Kwakwaka’wakw who struggled to restore their cultural history. 

125 notes

D’Sonoqua
Also spelled “Dzunukwa” or “Tsonokwa” is a giantess in the mythology of Kwakwaka’wakw peoples, who live in the Pacific Northwest, mainly on the BC coast, Northern Vancouver Island, and the Queen Charlotte Sound. 
D’Sonoqua was seen as a bringer of wealth worthy of respect and veneration, but also had a dark side, and was known to stuff children into her basket, to be carried away to her caves and eaten. She has a terrifying call, a “Hu!” or “Oo-oo-oo-oeo!”, which can be easily mistaken for the sound of the wind rustling through the cedar trees. The renown of her voice is such that images of her nearly always show pursed red lips, eternally calling out.
The above image of D’Sonoqua is by Emily Carr, that great artist of my home, Vancouver Island. She was a tremendous admirer of First Peoples’ art, and a ferocious critic of the missionaries and politicians who sought to displace our elder brothers and sisters on this continent.

D’Sonoqua

Also spelled “Dzunukwa” or “Tsonokwa” is a giantess in the mythology of Kwakwaka’wakw peoples, who live in the Pacific Northwest, mainly on the BC coast, Northern Vancouver Island, and the Queen Charlotte Sound. 

D’Sonoqua was seen as a bringer of wealth worthy of respect and veneration, but also had a dark side, and was known to stuff children into her basket, to be carried away to her caves and eaten. She has a terrifying call, a “Hu!” or “Oo-oo-oo-oeo!”, which can be easily mistaken for the sound of the wind rustling through the cedar trees. The renown of her voice is such that images of her nearly always show pursed red lips, eternally calling out.

The above image of D’Sonoqua is by Emily Carr, that great artist of my home, Vancouver Island. She was a tremendous admirer of First Peoples’ art, and a ferocious critic of the missionaries and politicians who sought to displace our elder brothers and sisters on this continent.

Filed under mythology goddess demon witch first nation kwakwaka'wakw west coast bc emily carr art painting religion

575 notes

art-of-swords:

Late Anglo-Saxon Sword 

  • Dated: AD 875
  • Found: 1874 in Abingdon, Oxfordshire, England

An iron sword fragment and hilt were found near Abingdon in Oxfordshire in 1874. The decoration on the sword hilt indicates this was a high status weapon dating from around AD 875. The style of the guards and pommel (Peterson style L) also suggest the sword dates from the late 9th to 10th century.

The sword hilt forms one of the most important examples of the late Anglo-Saxon silversmith’s art. The hilt is decorated with six silver engraved mounts; the engraved ornament on the mounts is in the Trewhiddle style - named after finds made at Trewhiddle, Cornwall. This style combines engraving and inlay with niello (black sulphide of silver).

The upper and lower guards are curved and contain various interlaced designs, including birds, animal and human figures, and foliate patterns. The figures on the upper guard have been identified as the four symbols of the evangelists.

The style of leaf used next to the figure of the eagle on the upper guard has also been identified on early tenth century embroideries from Durham, on the back of the Alfred Jewel and a number of other objects dating to this period.

The pommel incorporates two outward-looking animal heads, with protruding ears and round eyes and nostrils, now fragmentary. The lower portion of the iron blade is missing, however X-rays of the sword show that the blade is pattern welded.

The sword was acquired by Sir John Evans and presented to the Ashmolean in 1890. It is on display in the ‘England 400-1600’ gallery on the second floor.

Source: Copyright © 2014 Ashmolean Museum

73,537 notes

princessjanecrocker:

medievalpoc:

Over 700 Jefferson County High School students are staging walkouts and protests over proposed changes to the Advanced Placement History curriculum. According to Colorado Public Radio:

Last week, a school board member proposed that advanced placement history classes be required to promote free enterprise and patriotism and be required to avoid classroom materials that encourage social strife or civil disobedience. Two high schools in Jefferson County closed Friday after dozens of teachers called in sick in protest.

According the online petition to be delivered to the School District:

Jeffco Public School Board has just proposed a change of curriculum stating that, “Materials should not encourage or condone civil disorder, social strife or disregard of the law. Instructional materials should present positive aspects of the United States and its heritage.”

This means that important parts of our history such as the Civil Rights Movement, Native American genocide, and slavery will not be taught in public schools. If these important lessons are not taught, children will not learn from them, and what will stop them from happening again? This is a severe form of censorship intended to keep the youth ignorant and easy to manipulate. I’m hoping to get enough signatures to prove that this is a public issue, so, please, if this is important to you, please sign. Do not let our youth grow up in ignorance; we all deserve the truth!

You can sign the petition here.

You can read more articles at The Denver Post, CBS Denver (with video), and Colorado Public Radio.

Thanks to theseacaptainsdaughter for dropping a link in my inbox.

This is truly disturbing.

(via dantimes)

2,616 notes


“Last November the Activist Post ran a story about the propensity of police officers killing civilians. Stated was the following:
"Since 9/11, and the subsequent militarization of the police by the Department of Homeland Security, about 5,000 Americans have been killed by US police officers. The civilian death rate is nearly equal to the number of US soldiers killed in Iraq. In fact, you are 8 times more likely to be killed by a police officer than by a terrorist.”
That statistic is alarming enough considering if the 4,489 American soldiers killed in combat in Iraq constitute a condition of war, then the killing of 5,000 American civilians by United States police departments ought to be viewed as a war on we the People by our very own government.
…[The fact is] a cop is far more likely… to kill you than you are to kill a cop. Stated another way, when an officer comes into contact with you, you are far less of a threat to them than the perception our culture proliferates. The police are, in fact, more of a threat to YOU.
The idea that police have an incredibly dangerous job is what we Southerners call a tall-tale, a stretch of the truth to bolster an ego unwilling to accept mediocrity. Not to take away from what many fair-minded officers do every day, but as those stubborn things called facts would have it, policing is less dangerous than farming, fishing, logging, and trash collecting, as well as six other professions.  
Now is the time to burst the cop myth and to stop giving them the deference to murder our friends and family in the street.”
— Cops: The Myth of the Most Dangerous Job | AmericaWakieWakie 
(Photo Credit: 08/20/14, Oakland marches in solidarity with Ferguson, MO after police officer Darren Wilson shot and killed 18 yr old Mike Brown | AmericaWakieWakie)

A Benevolent Police Force: The Craziest Myth of all.

Last November the Activist Post ran a story about the propensity of police officers killing civilians. Stated was the following:

"Since 9/11, and the subsequent militarization of the police by the Department of Homeland Security, about 5,000 Americans have been killed by US police officers. The civilian death rate is nearly equal to the number of US soldiers killed in Iraq. In fact, you are 8 times more likely to be killed by a police officer than by a terrorist.”

That statistic is alarming enough considering if the 4,489 American soldiers killed in combat in Iraq constitute a condition of war, then the killing of 5,000 American civilians by United States police departments ought to be viewed as a war on we the People by our very own government.

…[The fact is] a cop is far more likely… to kill you than you are to kill a cop. Stated another way, when an officer comes into contact with you, you are far less of a threat to them than the perception our culture proliferates. The police are, in fact, more of a threat to YOU.

The idea that police have an incredibly dangerous job is what we Southerners call a tall-tale, a stretch of the truth to bolster an ego unwilling to accept mediocrity. Not to take away from what many fair-minded officers do every day, but as those stubborn things called facts would have it, policing is less dangerous than farming, fishing, logging, and trash collecting, as well as six other professions.  

Now is the time to burst the cop myth and to stop giving them the deference to murder our friends and family in the street.”

— Cops: The Myth of the Most Dangerous Job | AmericaWakieWakie 

(Photo Credit: 08/20/14, Oakland marches in solidarity with Ferguson, MO after police officer Darren Wilson shot and killed 18 yr old Mike Brown | AmericaWakieWakie)

A Benevolent Police Force: The Craziest Myth of all.

(via simonf)

211,073 notes

donc-desole:

polararts:

drtanner:

chakrabot:

slitheringink:

artofcarmen:

fyeahwhovians:

raygender:

themediafix:

Breaking news: The D.C. Appeals Court just killed Net Neutrality.This could be the end of the Internet as we know it. But it doesn’t have to be. Tell the FCC to restore Net Neutrality: http://bit.ly/1iOOjoe

they want to make the internet like tv. with channels and paying to get to specific websites and things. net neutrality = not doing that

This impacts every internet user. Please signal boost the hell out of this and sign the petition if you are American

I do not reblog things like this very often, but this affects me both personally and my business as a freelance artist.
In the economy here; cash is already strapped as it is. You bet your ass companies would suck the ever living life out of misc. art sites.
I don’t want it to ever come down to me choosing between groceries or purchasing a new tier package via comcast to be able to access tumblr or DeviantArt (let alone not guaranteeing I’ll even be seen by my customer base since they may not want to pay out their asses either). It doesn’t seem important to most, but I do 90% of my business online entirely.
Please sign up, fight for this and share it with your followers/friends/family and urge them to give them hell as well.

Not writing related, but this is incredibly important. While we pay for service via ISPs, the internet has been a relatively free space where everyone, no matter their income level, is able to connect, access a wealth of information, and express themselves. The Internet has become a major part of our culture as human beings and the notion that ISPs might be able to limit what sites I can access unless I pay them more is utterly sickening. A lot of us are cash strapped as is, and I’d rather not be limited even more by someone else’s greed. Net Neutrality is essential and I hope you guys will understand why it needs to remain.
-Morgan
P.S. Signal boost this if you’re able.

“ limit what sites I can access unless I pay them more”
 limit what sites I can access unless I pay them more
 limit what sites I can access unless I pay them more
 limit what sites I can access unless I pay them more
 limit what sites I can access unless I pay them more
DO YOU WANT THIS? NO?? CLICK THE LINK. REBLOG.

As I understand this ruling, it means that businesses now have to pay extra to ISPs to have access to their websites through that ISP provided at a reasonable speed. If you don’t pay, users’ access to your website will be slowed to a crawl - so independent people and small businesses can forget about getting onto that high speed access tier. 
This means that the American internet is going to be firmly under the control of those who have the most money. You’ll only get to see the content of those who can pay the ISPs to provide access at a reasonable speed. This means that you can expect to see skewed representation of just about everything, with those bigger businesses who can afford to pay ISPs a premium for access deciding what you can and cannot read, view and consume on the internet.
This is not something that we have in the UK. Our ISPs compete with each other to provide higher speeds, better services and lower prices, but because there’s a monopoly in the US of a few ISPs who provide services, they can afford to do this to you. You can’t go anywhere else, after all.
Everyone in the US needs to sign that petition, call their representatives, write angry letters and do whatever you can to tell your government that this ruling is Not Okay.

Maybe you guys are sick of this post but It’s really important to freelance artists and pretty much everyone who uses the internet, so here it is again.  \o0o/

As a perpetually dissatisfied customer of Comcast, this one goes out to them. SIGN THIS PETITION! 
And for those of us who are students, gdi we’re too broke to have to pay for this bullshit. 

donc-desole:

polararts:

drtanner:

chakrabot:

slitheringink:

artofcarmen:

fyeahwhovians:

raygender:

themediafix:

Breaking news: The D.C. Appeals Court just killed Net Neutrality.

This could be the end of the Internet as we know it. But it doesn’t have to be. 

Tell the FCC to restore Net Neutrality: http://bit.ly/1iOOjoe

they want to make the internet like tv. with channels and paying to get to specific websites and things. net neutrality = not doing that

This impacts every internet user. Please signal boost the hell out of this and sign the petition if you are American

I do not reblog things like this very often, but this affects me both personally and my business as a freelance artist.

In the economy here; cash is already strapped as it is. You bet your ass companies would suck the ever living life out of misc. art sites.

I don’t want it to ever come down to me choosing between groceries or purchasing a new tier package via comcast to be able to access tumblr or DeviantArt (let alone not guaranteeing I’ll even be seen by my customer base since they may not want to pay out their asses either). It doesn’t seem important to most, but I do 90% of my business online entirely.

Please sign up, fight for this and share it with your followers/friends/family and urge them to give them hell as well.

Not writing related, but this is incredibly important. While we pay for service via ISPs, the internet has been a relatively free space where everyone, no matter their income level, is able to connect, access a wealth of information, and express themselves. The Internet has become a major part of our culture as human beings and the notion that ISPs might be able to limit what sites I can access unless I pay them more is utterly sickening. A lot of us are cash strapped as is, and I’d rather not be limited even more by someone else’s greed. Net Neutrality is essential and I hope you guys will understand why it needs to remain.

-Morgan

P.S. Signal boost this if you’re able.

“ limit what sites I can access unless I pay them more”

 limit what sites I can access unless I pay them more

 limit what sites I can access unless I pay them more

 limit what sites I can access unless I pay them more

 limit what sites I can access unless I pay them more

DO YOU WANT THIS? NO?? CLICK THE LINK. REBLOG.

As I understand this ruling, it means that businesses now have to pay extra to ISPs to have access to their websites through that ISP provided at a reasonable speed. If you don’t pay, users’ access to your website will be slowed to a crawl - so independent people and small businesses can forget about getting onto that high speed access tier. 

This means that the American internet is going to be firmly under the control of those who have the most money. You’ll only get to see the content of those who can pay the ISPs to provide access at a reasonable speed. This means that you can expect to see skewed representation of just about everything, with those bigger businesses who can afford to pay ISPs a premium for access deciding what you can and cannot read, view and consume on the internet.

This is not something that we have in the UK. Our ISPs compete with each other to provide higher speeds, better services and lower prices, but because there’s a monopoly in the US of a few ISPs who provide services, they can afford to do this to you. You can’t go anywhere else, after all.

Everyone in the US needs to sign that petition, call their representatives, write angry letters and do whatever you can to tell your government that this ruling is Not Okay.

Maybe you guys are sick of this post but It’s really important to freelance artists and pretty much everyone who uses the internet, so here it is again.  \o0o/

As a perpetually dissatisfied customer of Comcast, this one goes out to them. SIGN THIS PETITION! 

And for those of us who are students, gdi we’re too broke to have to pay for this bullshit. 

(via blinddog)

2,470 notes

art-of-swords:

[ NEWS ] Scholars confirm first discovery of Japanese sword from master bladesmith Masamune in 150 years
by Casey Baseel
Should you visit a history museum in Japan, and, like I do, make an immediate beeline for the collections of samurai armor and weaponry, you might be surprised to notice that Japanese swords are customarily displayed with the stitching removed from the hilt. Visually, it sort of dampens the impact, since the remaining skinny slab of metal is a lot less evocative of it actually being gripped and wielded by one of Japan’s warriors of ages past.
The reason this is done, though, is because many Japanese swordsmiths would “sign” their works by etching their names into the metal of the hilt. Some craftsmen achieved almost legendary status, becoming folk heroes whose names are widely known even today.
The most respected of all, though, was Masamune, whose reluctance to sign his blades has made identifying them difficult. But difficult and impossible are two different things, and for the first time in over a century, a sword has been confirmed by historians as being the creation of the master himself.
Masamune was active during the late 13th and early 14th centuries, the part of Japan that today is part of Kanagawa Prefecture. He lived his life during the Kamakura Period, when the samurai class saw the most dramatic rise in its power over Japan.
Producing the highest-quality blades during a time of military power made Masamune’s swords extremely prized. Today, the only swordsmith who can approach his exalted historical status is Muramasa, who was born hundreds of years later. Justified or not, Muramasa is said to have been psychologically imbalanced and prone to violence. Superstition holds that these traits were passed on to the swords he forged, and as such Masamune’s are often held to be the superior weapons.
However, it can be hard to keep track of weapons in a country that’s gone through as many civil wars, revolutions, and occupations as Japan has, no matter how impressive their pedigree. Last year, a man brought a sword, which had found its way into his personal property, to the Kyoto National Museum to be appraised. Historian and sword scholar Taeko Watanabe spent the months between then and now studying the blade, and has recently announce her conclusion that it is a Masamune.
"Judging from its unique characteristics such as the pattern that can be seen in the side of the blade… it was unmistakably forged by Masamune."
The particular sword, which Watanabe says is called the Shimazu Masamune, had been given in 1862 by Iemochi, the 14th Tokugawa shogun, to the Imperial Family to mark his marriage to Princess Kazunomiya, also known as Princess Kazu.
"By presenting such a masterwork to the Imperial Family, Iemochi showed the deepest appreciation and highest respect," Watanabe commented.
Following this, the sword’s whereabouts were unknown until its anonymous owner brought it to the museum in Kyoto. It is the first blade to be confirmed as a Masamune in roughly 150 years.

Source: Copyright © 2014 Rocket News 24

art-of-swords:

[ NEWS ] Scholars confirm first discovery of Japanese sword from master bladesmith Masamune in 150 years

  • by Casey Baseel

Should you visit a history museum in Japan, and, like I do, make an immediate beeline for the collections of samurai armor and weaponry, you might be surprised to notice that Japanese swords are customarily displayed with the stitching removed from the hilt. Visually, it sort of dampens the impact, since the remaining skinny slab of metal is a lot less evocative of it actually being gripped and wielded by one of Japan’s warriors of ages past.

The reason this is done, though, is because many Japanese swordsmiths would “sign” their works by etching their names into the metal of the hilt. Some craftsmen achieved almost legendary status, becoming folk heroes whose names are widely known even today.

The most respected of all, though, was Masamune, whose reluctance to sign his blades has made identifying them difficult. But difficult and impossible are two different things, and for the first time in over a century, a sword has been confirmed by historians as being the creation of the master himself.

Masamune was active during the late 13th and early 14th centuries, the part of Japan that today is part of Kanagawa Prefecture. He lived his life during the Kamakura Period, when the samurai class saw the most dramatic rise in its power over Japan.

Producing the highest-quality blades during a time of military power made Masamune’s swords extremely prized. Today, the only swordsmith who can approach his exalted historical status is Muramasa, who was born hundreds of years later. Justified or not, Muramasa is said to have been psychologically imbalanced and prone to violence. Superstition holds that these traits were passed on to the swords he forged, and as such Masamune’s are often held to be the superior weapons.

However, it can be hard to keep track of weapons in a country that’s gone through as many civil wars, revolutions, and occupations as Japan has, no matter how impressive their pedigree. Last year, a man brought a sword, which had found its way into his personal property, to the Kyoto National Museum to be appraised. Historian and sword scholar Taeko Watanabe spent the months between then and now studying the blade, and has recently announce her conclusion that it is a Masamune.

"Judging from its unique characteristics such as the pattern that can be seen in the side of the blade… it was unmistakably forged by Masamune."

The particular sword, which Watanabe says is called the Shimazu Masamune, had been given in 1862 by Iemochi, the 14th Tokugawa shogun, to the Imperial Family to mark his marriage to Princess Kazunomiya, also known as Princess Kazu.

"By presenting such a masterwork to the Imperial Family, Iemochi showed the deepest appreciation and highest respect," Watanabe commented.

Following this, the sword’s whereabouts were unknown until its anonymous owner brought it to the museum in Kyoto. It is the first blade to be confirmed as a Masamune in roughly 150 years.

Source: Copyright © 2014 Rocket News 24

12,755 notes

Oldest depiction of female form shows that modern archaeologists are pornsick misogynists : Reclusive Leftist

cannelledusoleil:

female-only:

plansfornigel:

Image and video hosting by TinyPic

Female figurine from the Hohle Fels cave near Stuttgart, about 35,000 years old. Interpreted as a pornographic pin-up.

“The Earliest Pornography” says Science Now, describing the 35,000 year old ivory figurine that’s been dug up in a cave near Stuttgart. The tiny statuette is of a female with exaggerated breasts and vulva. According to Paul Mellars, one of the archaeologist twits who commented on the find for Nature, this makes the figurine “pornographic.” Nature is even titling its article, “Prehistoric Pin Up.” It’s the Venus of Willendorf double standard all over again. Ancient figures of naked pregnant women are interpreted by smirking male archaeologists as pornography, while equally sexualized images of men are assumed to depict gods or shamans. Or even hunters or warriors. Funny, huh?

Consider: phallic images from the Paleolithic are at least 28,000 years old. Neolithic cultures all over the world seemed to have a thing for sculptures with enormous erect phalluses. Ancient civilizations were awash in images of male genitalia, from the Indian lingam to the Egyptian benben to the Greek herm. The Romans even painted phalluses on their doors and wore phallic charms around their necks.

Image and video hosting by TinyPicIthyphallic figure from Lascaux, about 17,000 years old. Interpreted as a shaman.

But nobody ever interprets this ancient phallic imagery as pornography. Instead, it’s understood to indicate reverence for male sexual potency. No one, for example, has ever suggested that the Lascaux cave dude was a pin-up; he’s assumed to be a shaman. The ithyphallic figurines from the Neolithic — and there are many — are interpreted as gods. And everyone knows that the phalluses of ancient India and Egypt and Greece and Rome represented awesome divine powers of fertility and protection. Yet an ancient figurine of a nude woman — a life-giving woman, with her vulva ready to bring forth a new human being, and her milk-filled breasts ready to nourish that being — is interpreted as pornography. Just something for a man to whack off to. It’s not as if there’s no other context in which to interpret the figure. After all, the European Paleolithic is chock full of pregnant-looking female statuettes that are quite similar to this one. By the time we get to the Neolithic, the naked pregnant female is enthroned with lions at her feet, and it’s clear that people are worshipping some kind of female god.

Yet in the Science Now article, the archaeologist who found the figurine is talking about pornographic pin-ups: “I showed it to a male colleague, and his response was, ‘Nothing’s changed in 40,000 years.’” That sentence needs to be bronzed and hung up on a plaque somewhere, because you couldn’t ask for a better demonstration of the classic fallacy of reading the present into the past. The archaeologist assumes the artist who created the figurine was male; why? He assumes the motive was lust; why? Because that’s all he knows. To his mind, the image of a naked woman with big breasts and exposed vulva can only mean one thing: porn! Porn made by men, for men! And so he assumes, without questioning his assumptions, that the image must have meant the same thing 35,000 years ago. No other mental categories for “naked woman” are available to him. His mind is a closed box. This has been the central flaw of anthropology for as long there’s been anthropology. And even before: the English invaders of North America thought the Iroquois chiefs had concubines who accompanied them everywhere, because they had no other mental categories to account for well-dressed, important-looking women sitting in a council house. It’s the same fallacy that bedevils archaeologists who dig up male skeletons with fancy beads and conclude that the society was male dominant (because powerful people wear jewelry!), and at another site dig up female skeletons with fancy beads and conclude that this society, too, was male dominant (because women have to dress up as sex objects and trophy wives!). Male dominance is all they can imagine. And so no matter what they dig up, they interpret it to fit their mental model. It’s the fallacy that also drives evolutionary psychology, the central premise of which is that human beings in the African Pleistocene had exactly the same values, beliefs, prejudices, power struggles, goals, and needs as the middle-class white professors and students in a graduate psychology lab in modern-day Santa Barbara, California. And that these same factors are universal and unchanged and true for all time.

Image and video hosting by TinyPicHohle Fels phallus, about 28,000 years old. Interpreted as a symbolic object and …flint knapper. Yes.

That’s not science; it’s circular, self-serving propaganda. This little figurine from Hohle Fels, for example, is going to be used as “proof” that pornography is ancient and natural. I guarantee it. Having been interpreted by pornsick male archaeologists as pornography because that’s all they know, the statuette will now be trotted out by every ev psycho and male supremacist on the planet as “proof” that pornography is eternal, that male dominance is how it’s supposed to be, and that feminists are crazy so shut the fuck up. Look for it in Steven Pinker’s next book. ***

P.S. My own completely speculative guess on the figurine is that it might be connected to childbirth rituals. Notice the engraved marks and slashes; that’s a motif that continues for thousands of years on these little female figurines. No one knows what they mean, but they meant something. They’re not just random cut marks. Someone put a great deal of work into this sculpture. Given that childbirth was incredibly risky for Paleolithic women, they must have prayed their hearts out for help and protection in that time. I can imagine an elder female shaman or artist carving this potent little figure, and propping it up somewhere as a focus for those prayers.

On the other hand, it is possible that it has nothing to do with childbearing or sexual behavior at all. The breasts and vulva may simply indicate who the figure is: the female god. Think of how Christ is always depicted with a beard, which is a male sexual characteristic, even though Christ isn’t about male sexuality. The beard is just a marker. Or, given the figurine’s exaggerated breasts, it may have something to do with sustenance: milk, food, nourishment.

The notion that some dude carved this thing to whack off to — when he was surrounded by women who probably weren’t wearing much in the way of clothes anyway — is laughable.

Good lord I am so glad I took ancient art from a female professor.

(via bad-motivator)