Clean-Shaven Prehistoric Women

How come whenever people draw pictures of women from prehistoric times their always clean-shaven? For that matter why are men shown clean-shaven too? Razors weren’t invented so why do we assume they shaved. I mean they could have shaved with a sharp rock I guess, but thats gotta hurt like hell. And why is it bad for women to have facial or body hair anyway. When did this concept of beauty start?

Cecil on:
Who decided women should shave their legs and underarms?
This thread might be of interest.

Either because the artist is personally disgusted by body hair or feels that his or her audience would be.
Pictures intended purely for educational purposes, such as those used in museum displays, are more likely to show hairy prehistoric folks.

There are other ways to remove body hair. It’s possible to shave with a knife, although I wouldn’t want to try it. I have heard that some women in the Middle East “wax” with honey. Women in ancient Greece singed off their body hair with oil lamps; they stop doing this to help them pass as men in Aristophanes’ “Ekklesiazousai”.

Thanks for the links. Next time I’ll be sure to do a search. Okay my question has been answered. Feel free to do whatever you want with this thread. Make some use of it.

This gets into the whole question of just how sophisticated prehistoric cultures were. For a long time it was presumed that before the dawn of agriculture and civilization, people existed on a virtually animal level. The cartoon cliche of the grunting cave man for example. But lately there have been some theories that between 30,000 and 10,000 years BCE, humans might have used the technologies available to them in very sophisticated ways.

Weaving for example is now thought to precede agriculture by nearly 10,000 years. There’s some evidence that mammoth hunters discovered ways of caching meat that allowed it to be stored for months. One book (that I read in the library and can’t cite, sorry) claimed that before agricultural societies took the best regions away from hunter/gatherers, that there may have even been organized political entities the author called “proto-governments” that extended over geographically widespread areas.

Maybe The Flintstones wasn’t as far-fetched as we thought…

Thank you lumpy for making good use of this thread. The new question is how advanced were prehistoric cultures. Do with it what you will.

Oh my? Cecil got this one wrong.

Where did he get the factiod that Med. Women don’t generally shave their hair. It’s a well-established and ancient practice on the south side of the Med. I recall an amusing anectdote I read, I think in a Bernard Lewis book regarding the Levantines being horrified by the hairiness of the Crusaders.

In re razors: ‘fraid the assumption is wrong. Stone blades can and were polished to razor sharpness. Nothing particularly high-tech about this, just a bit of work.

I agree with Lamia, its the artist’s choice. Studied cave art today in my grade 9 art class, great excuse to draw naked women. :slight_smile: I don’t recall anyone’s drawing be hairy.