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The Unusual Sculptures of Telantunich, Yucatán: Phalli and the Concept of Masculinity among the Ancient Maya

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  26 January 2006

Traci Ardren
Affiliation:
Department of Anthropology, University of Miami, PO Box 248106, Coral Gables, FL 33124-2005, USA; tardren@miami.edu.
David R. Hixson
Affiliation:
Department of Anthropology, Tulane University, 6823 St Charles Avenue, New Orleans, LA 70118, USA; dhixson@tulane.edu.

Abstract

Recently discovered sculpture fragments from the area surrounding the important but little-studied site of Telantunich confirm a regional tradition of human portraiture quite distinct from the better-known canon of Maya stelae. Comparative material presented here shows connections between this tradition and a regional emphasis on depictions of masculine sexuality, especially depictions of human phalli. The authors present an analysis of this corpus that confirms that such depictions both reflect Classic Maya conceptions of masculinity and were deployed to convey and reify such conceptions within society.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
2006 The McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research

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