I know you were. Wondering why all those statues in every single museum have the tiniest dicks ever, that is. According to art historian Ellen Oredsson, it’s not just because the sculptors were feeling timid/got lazy when it came to shaping the baby’s arm, so to speak. As it turns out, it’s a cultural thing.
As Oredsson explains on her blog How To Talk About Art History, “cultural values about male beauty were completely different back then. Today, big penises are seen as valuable and manly, but back then, most evidence points to the fact that small penises were considered better than big ones.” The reason being that big ole dicks were apparently “associated with very specific characteristics: foolishness, lust and ugliness,” to name a few.
Which is weird, because the very endowed Michael Fassmember— I mean, Fassbender— seems like a far less crude human being to me than self-proclaimed small-penis owners Enrique Iglesias and Shia LaBeouf, but that’s cultural stereotypes for you. Unreliable.
Oredsson provides this image as an example:
That right there is Priapus, “a Greek fertility god cursed with a permanent erection, impotence, ugliness and foul-mindedness by Hera.” Um, yeah, if you were afflicted with a permanent erection and simultaneous impotence, you’d probably be a little foul-minded too. What I’m saying is, maybe it’s not his fault? But I digress.
On the other hand, the ideal dude “was rational, intellectual and authoritative. He may still have had a lot of sex, but this was unrelated to his penis size, and his small penis allowed him to remain coolly logical.” The smaller the peen the clearer the mind, or so the logic goes.
Oredsson was also quick to note that all these Greek dudes are flaccid, and that if you compare them to genuine authentic penises “they are actually not significantly smaller than real-life penises tend to be.” Basically, stop penis-shaming ancient Greek statues, okay? Glass houses, and all that.
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