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Actas Urológicas Españolas

Print version ISSN 0210-4806


ANGULO CUESTA, J.  and  GARCIA DIEZ, M.. Diversity and meaning of masculine phallic palaeolithic images in Western Europe. Actas Urol Esp [online]. 2006, vol.30, n.3, pp.254-267. ISSN 0210-4806.

The archaeological record necessary to understand the sexual behaviour of our ancestors from Upper Palaeolithic (38.000-8.500 B.C.) is limited. Traditionally the ethnographic information about sexuality and the relations between sexes derived from comparitions with current primitive human groups have been considered very important, although they have been evaluated more from a social and anthropological rather than biological perspective. Ice age art art, both rock and portable, is a reflection of the behaviour of palaeolithic human groups. The purpose of this text focuses on understanding the types of representations and sexual attitudes during the Upper Palaeolithic, as reflected from masculine images of phallic character. Practices of foreskin retraction, some phalli possibly circumcised, copulative acts, expressions of masturbation, instruments that have been likely been used for masturbation and other sexual scenes, some of which are difficult to interpretate, show that the sexual behaviour of the human groups of the Upper Palaeolithic were similar to ours, both from a biological and physiological viewpoint.

Keywords : Masculine phallic images; Sexual behaviour; Rock and portable art; Upper Palaeolithic; Prehistory; Western Europe.

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