Adovasio lectures on women in prehistory

Men have long received the majority of the credit for hunting and providing their families with food, but Professor of Anthropology and Archaeology James Adovasio, Ph.D., says they get too much credit.

He spoke at Taylor Little Theatre on Tuesday about his research and his book titled “The Invisible Sex, Uncovering the True Roles of Women in Prehistory.”

The focus of the lecture was about the hidden roles of women in history and the title of the lecture was “Women in Prehistory: Distorted Views.”

“It was very intriguing and interesting to learn of the lack of appreciation of women,” freshman Jordan Jaskiewicz said.

Adovasio began his lecture explaining the research found by scientists in the creation of the New World.

Sarah Hlusko photo: James Adovasio, Ph.D., lectured on Sarah Hlusko photo: James Adovasio, Ph.D., lectured on “Women in Prehistory: Distorted Views” on Tuesday in Taylor Little Theatre.

He explained how glaciers formed the lands, transferring materials across vast lands and cultivating landscapes.

He then moved onto the research of river terraces, which led to the findings of human-crafted stone tools.

“It was interesting to learn how big the participation of females in the making of weapons and other artifacts was, and that these were items that supposedly were for activities men were only involved in,” Performing Arts Center Office Manager Gabriela Meza said.

Stone tools were used for hunting, which was seen as a man’s job. People like to think that prehistoric people typically hunted huge animals like the mammoth; however, it was more of an occasional event, according to Adovasio.

In reality, hunting more likely involved the trapping and killing of small animals.

This proves that women played a much larger role in the gathering and hunting process than people are normally led to believe.

“I found it interesting to find out it was more gathering than hunting, rather than more hunting than gathering,” senior Jacqueline Narvaez said.

“It was women who were the ones that supported the family by gathering, while men were not very successful at hunting. In conclusion, if it wasn’t for women, the families may have starved to death,” she said.

Adovasio explained how women also played a large role in the making of tools and that men receive the majority of credit for these things. People always focus on men and their hunting skills, when really there is little archaeological evidence to prove this.

He also explained about artifacts and their role in history and gave a great amount of background information. The biggest conclusion drawn was that men did not do as much as prehistory originally said.

Adovasio’s lecture was sponsored by the Gender and Relationships Symposium.

The next event in the series is “Sketches of Life: A Multimedia Performance” in Walker Recital Hall on Sunday, Jan. 22, at 2 p.m. Admission is free.