IES: Russia




CHUKCHEE (Siberia)



Bogoraz-Tan (p269)[1], on Russian Reindeer Chukchee’s children’s games: “[A] class of […] songs represents the act of copulation, with a rather queer dance and even with imitative sounds. The dance often ends in two girls lying on the ground imitating sexual intercourse. Frequently young boys also take part in the performance”. The technique of coitus is effectively communicated by verbal description. It is stated that most of the girls “begin their sexual life with the first traces of maturity, being but fifteen or sixteen, and sometimes only twelve or thirteen years old, and quite immature [sic]”[2]. Wrangel (cited by Esman, 1871:p164[3]; see Brongersma, 1987:p111) states that North Siberia boys begin sexual relations with girls at age ten, but nevertheless enjoy contacts with men. “Chukchee believes that coition will harm a girl until her breasts are developed or she begins to menstruate. But prepubescent girls often indulge in coitus despite this belief”[4].









Janssen, D. F., Growing Up Sexually. Volume I. World Reference Atlas. 0.2 ed. 2004. Berlin: Magnus Hirschfeld Archive for Sexology

Last revised: Sept 2004




[1] Bogoraz-Tan, V. G. (1904-9) The Chukchee. Three parts. Leiden, The Netherlands: E. J. Brill, Ltd. / New York: G. E. Stechert & Co.

[2] Bogoras, as quoted in Czaplicka (1914:p70), op.cit.

[3] Erman, A. (1871) Ethnographische Wahrnehmingen und –erfahrungen an die Küsten des Beringsmeeres, Zeitschr Ethnol 3 :149-75

[4] Cakravarti, C. (1963) Sex Life in Ancient India. Calcutta, p144