Cavemen: Neglected and branded

Graphic by Seth Walker

What comes up to your mind when you think of cavemen? Half-naked, muscular and leopard-skin-wearing? Perhaps the Flintstones?

We may have a clear image of cavemen in our heads but do you know that those are all just stereotypes made strong by the media?

To help us bust these misconceptions about cavemen, the Student Society of Anthropologists will be holding the Cavemen Night on May 18, from 7:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m. in C140.

Cavemen, a comedy movie starring Ringo Starr and Dennis Quaid, alongside  a lecture given by the club advisor, Tony Tessandori, will make up the night’s program that aims at changing the conventional image of cavemen.

The plot of the movie revolves around cavemen Atouk and his friend Lar who are both bullied by their tribe’s leader Tonda.

After being exiled from their tribe, Atouk and Lar joined a gang of cave outcasts and went on an adventure with them. The group discovered all sorts of new skills in the journey and finally defeated Tonda.

This gag-filled comedy made in 1981 demonstrates precisely the long established image of cave people—the way they dress and the way they talk and interact with peers—and leads to the heart of the night’s lecture.

Tessandori explained in an e-mail that for the lecture, he will be discussing the cultural and social significance of cave people throughout time and the origin points for many of the things people relate to cave people. He will also look at what the “popular” caveperson does and how they look from a statistical level.

The discussion on cavemen, according to Tessandori, has been delved into in many anthropology classes but has never really fit into any particular class. He regarded this film and lecture night a good way to expand on the topic.

“This is going to be a fun evening but will also be very informative.

“Anthropology as a science is tasked with understanding people. What better way to arrive at an understanding than to take a preconceived notion and to shake it up, discover where it comes from and to see how it fit into the larger social and cultural contexts,” Tessandori commented.

The Anthropology Club has been putting on movie nights for over two years now. The club has also held Alien nights and fundraised for Heifer International.

On top of that, members have volunteered their time to bake cookies and popcorn to buy animals for people in need. Their most recent purchase is a cow!

“We hope that the cavemen night can bust those misconceptions [about cave people], and also celebrate their hilarity.

“Anyone who likes a good movie is welcome to come,” said Freyja Vining, president of the Anthropology Club.