- “Sensitive but resilient, equally available during the day or night with a minimum of coaxing, it has performed purposefully if not always skillfully for an eternity of centuries, endlessly searching, sensing, expanding, probing, penetrating, throbbing, wilting, and wanting more. Never concealing its prurient interest, it is man’s most honest organ.” —Thy Neighbor’s Wife, (1981), Gay Talese.
It’s time for the 25th installment in our series of mini-articles on icons of erotic art. Today’s item is an unabashed tribute to man’s most honest organ, that wonderful extension to the human male’s groin, the wondrous complex of bulging blood vessels, the source of pride of alpha through zeta males: the penis. Here represented by Le Dieu Priape (ca. 1779 – 1795) by French visionary architect and draughtsman Jean-Jacques Lequeu, it shows a large, elegant and powerful phallus. Calling it a phallus, makes it clear that the penis is erect, because let’s face it, in a flaccid state our pride is pretty preposterous.
P.S. The quote of Thy Neighbor’s Wife by Gay Talese came my way via a Dutch translation of Louise Kaplan’s recently acquired Female Perversions, from the first cursory reading, a very good study of female sexual behavior and its representation in psychoanalytic theory and western literature and Emma Bovary in particular.