As a Horny Time Traveler of long standing, over the decades I have accumulated a number of esoteric books about women through the ages. I confess that I usually just dip into these volumes for strange bits of information, rather than reading them in a thorough or systematic way—much like you’d move from eating Hershey’s Kisses to Reese’s Pieces simply on a whim to snack. For me, curious bits of knowledge are kind of like intellectual bon-bons.
I also like pictures of naked women reading books or periodicals…
The other day I came upon my copy of History’s Mistress, by Paula Weideger. It’s actually a selection of entries taken from a huge 1885 German book called Das Weib (Woman), which was an anthropological and enthnographic study of females throughout the world. The original author was a gynecologist, tireless researcher, and man-about-town named Hermann Heinrich Ploss (1819-1885). His book was later updated by one of his colleagues, Dr. Maximilian Bartels; it was finally published in English in 1935, with even more emendations by the 1935 translator, Eric John Dingwall. Then in 1985, the feminist scholar Weideger made a selection of the materials and reinterpreted their meanings through a women’s liberationist looking glass. She seemed amused by the boyish enthusiasm of the original researchers, and likened them to adolescent lads in grade school fascinated by dog-eared copies of National Geographic full of images of bare-breasted native girls. Well, whether the scholars of Das Weib were adolescent-minded or not, those still-eminent male researchers were able to marshal a tremendous amount of interesting material between two covers.
On p. 65 of History’s Mistress, we learn a curious fact about the women of the Bismarck Archipelago…an area described in Wikipedia as “a group of islands off the northeastern coast of New Guinea in the western Pacific Ocean and part of Papua New Guinea.”
It seems that according to a researcher named Bassler addressing the Anthropological Society of Berlin, the native women of this area sported very noticeable and thick pubic hair, dyed red, and that…”the women wiped their hands on their pubic hair when they were soiled or damp, as we are accustomed to use towels.”
I bet the devil put them up to it…
Uh-oh, bad boy…I hope I’m not putting ideas into anybody’s head by unearthing this concept. Let’s pray that in these recessionary times, with much pinching of pennies, this practice is not revived!
But have you checked out the cost of paper towels lately?
I got the lovely image of a reading girl from Read, Write, Now, another WordPress blog. Check out this link for another nice image of a gal in the buff improving her mind!