Pastora Cave (Alcoi, Alcant)

Gender and sex
Gender, beliefs, identities and religions

These idols are symbolic material manifestations linked to the world of ideas and beliefs among the early farming communities of the 3rd millennium BC.

The decoration on some eye idols includes a triangular motif interpreted as a representation of the pubic triangle, making it possible to identify their sexuality as female.

The various interpretations of eye idols can be grouped into two schools of thought. One postulates that they represent a female divinity of Neolithic origin, a reflection of the concern for survival in terms of agricultural or livestock production, and a concept of fertility that encompasses humans as well as animals and the land. The other views the idols as the symbolic representation of a person. They would have evoked ancestors or forebears, representing genealogical origins and the lineage of individuals belonging to the élite. Recently, another interpretation has been added for idols on long bones, that they are dolls, based on ethnographic studies of Central African peoples.

The importance of the feminine in these objects is determined by their obvious sexual attribution, although it is not possible to go beyond this in understanding their meaning.