From women without a story to a History of Women

Mujer neandertal Pulse para ampliar Mujer neandertal. Sala 5, vitrina 5.6

Neanderthal woman

This Neanderthal woman lived in an Asturian cave called El Sidrón. Her species, very much in fashion today, is currently under discussion in numerous scientific debates. The main information about Neanderthals comes from their bones and teeth. In addition to using their teeth for chewing, they were also useful for holding objects and manipulating them better. However, given the scarcity of the evidence, as already mentioned, it´s risky to deduce details regarding their behavior, their customs, their interaction between the sexes or how tasks were distributed according to gender. Neither we cannot obtain this kind of information from the few neandertal objects that have survived to this day.

Topics like these regarding prehistoric societies have traditionally been reconstructed by transferring social models pertaining to sex or gender from the society that was studying them. That´s why, ever since the Paleolithic period, it seemed as if women didn´t have a story to be told or had always been limited to performing secondary roles. Advancements in archeology at the end of the 20th century achieved by female researchers investigating the History of Women highlighted roles women played and organizational models that differed from their contemporaries. New ways of formulating questions about objects and other archeological elements have revealed an uncharted world in which women emerge in leading roles, as we will see over the course of our visit.