And the rib that the Lord God had taken from the man he made into a woman and brought her to the man. This mosaic from the Cathedral of Monreale, Sicily, depicts the creation of woman in the Bible. But was it really his rib?
If we look back at how it all began, we find that, worldwide, sex and gender issues have been expressed in oral traditions such as myths and origin stories, fairytales, animal fables, love poems or cradle songs and proverbs. They are our main topic here, but a first brief look into how men and women came into being, as presented in creation myths is an illuminating point of entry. Her name was not Eve, but Lilith. Their having been created on an equal footing had terrible consequences, because Lilith wanted to have sex on top, and she insisted on her right to do so. According to some variants, Adam refused this, divorced her and sent her away, but in other versions she was the one who abandoned him.