Tattooed: The Sociogenesis of a Body Art

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Overview

Tattoos have become increasingly popular in recent years, especially among young people. While tattooing is used as a symbol of personal identity and social communication, there has been little sociological study of the phenomenon. In Tattooed: The Sociogenesis of a Body Art, tattoo enthusiasts share their stories about their bodies and tattooing experiences. Michael Atkinson shows how enthusiasts negotiate and celebrate their 'difference' as it relates to the social stigma attached to body art - how the act of tattooing is as much a response to the stigma as it is a form of personal expression - and how a generation has appropriated tattooing as its own symbol of inclusiveness. Atkinson further demonstrates how the displaying of tattooed bodies to others - techniques of disclosure, justification, and representation - has become a part of the shared experience.

Cultural sensibilities about tattooing are discussed within historical context and in relation to broader trends in body modification, such as cosmetic surgery, dieting, and piercing. The author also employs research from a number of disciplines, as well as contemporary sociological and postmodern theory, to analyze the enduring social significance of body art.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780802085689
  • Publisher: University of Toronto Press, Scholarly Publishing Division
  • Publication date: 8/28/2003
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 376
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.01 (h) x 0.76 (d)

Meet the Author

Michael Atkinson is an assistant professor in the Department of Sociology at McMaster University.
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Table of Contents

Preface
Acknowledgments
1 Tattooing as Body Modification 3
2 Tattoo and Sociogenesis 23
3 Academic and Media Representations 51
4 Meeting Tattoo Enthusiasts 69
5 Subculture or Figuration? 91
6 Sociogenesis and Personality Structures 127
7 Life-course Transition and Representation: The Deviance Tightrope 157
8 Shame, Social Control, and Display 207
9 The Body-modification Habits of Canadians 237
References 267
Index 289
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