contexts

A bunch of articles about gang tattoos: ‘dangerous language of tattoos’ from Spain, gang tattoo removal programs outlined in American articles and an interesting perspective from an ex-gang member in New Zealand.

Another interesting article from New Zealand discusses ‘tattoos in the workplace’.

The British article ‘tattoo culture under the spotlight’ brings to our attention the fact that tattoos in the West are usually about individuality, self-defining and rebellion against society while more traditional, ‘tribal’ tattoos were/are about belonging to and defining one’s status within tribe. Somehow it also reminded me of an article about Woodabe people in the newest National Geographic issue according to which, when asked about drawing a self-portrait, Wodaabe and many other tribal peoples focus not on the physical features of their faces and bodies but on their tattoos/scars/etc. as those are the elements that define them and make them who they are (Maori chiefs in the 19th century come to mind here, too).

On a different and yet still relevant note, in the West tattoos can mean so much more – a letter from concerned parents to a psychotherapist shows it clearly.

Finally, something light from Belgium – eye jewelry (with a video).

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