View Full Version : Curves preferred in prehistoric Japan

1st June 2010, 08:48
One of the forum topics that has always interested me is the subject of the appreciation of curves throughout history, going all the way back to paleolithic times (as discussed here (http://www.judgmentofparis.com/board/showthread.php?t=399), here (http://www.judgmentofparis.com/board/showthread.php?t=965), and most recently, here (http://www.judgmentofparis.com/board/showthread.php?t=1546)).

According to a new article, Japanese archeologists have just unearthed one of the oldest figurines ever discovered in that country, and it depicts -- you guessed it -- a plus-size female body.


Here's the sculpture in question, showing the notably full bust and generous waist.


And here are a few excerpts from the article:

Prehistoric Figurine Shows Our Ancestors' Appreciation For The Female Form

by Steve Levenstein

Buxom beauties with Rubenesque figures have been the subjects of artists throughout history and, it seems even in pre-history. Exceedingly rare, the clay figure found in near Higashiomi in Japan's Shiga prefecture is only the second one of its type to be found in the country.

...Japan was peopled by members of the Jomon culture (14,000 BC to 300 BC). The Jomon were a Neolithic society who left very little in the way of stone or metal tools or structures. They did create pottery - some of the first known anywhere in the world - and the clay figurine found in Shiga is therefore a very noteworthy find as it is obviously not utilitarian in nature.

According to the Shiga Prefectural Association for Cultural Heritage, members of which discovered the figurine at the Aidanikumahara archaeological site, the curvy and very obviously female torso dates back approximately 13,000 years and bears the hallmarks of the Jomon Pottery Culture. It joins the 25,000-year-old carved stone "Venus Of Willendorf," found in central Europe, as one of the few non-utilitarian sculptures produced by our pre-civilized ancestors.
I especially appreciate the fact that the article begins with an acknowledgment that the Rubenesque figure was preferred "throughout history." It's another example of the general public recognizing that full-figured beauty is timeless.

Here's a short video about the find. Although the narration is in Japanese, it does offer a 360-degree view of the figurine.

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It's very encouraging that this find was made in Japan. Plus-size beauty is all too rarely acknowledged in present-day Japan, but as this ancient figurine demonstrates, the appreciation for the fuller female body has a historical basis in the Far East as well as in the West.