Re: Mutilation and ritual

Adrienne Dearmas (DearmasA@AOL.COM)
Mon, 15 Jul 1996 11:55:56 -0400

In a message dated 96-07-13 11:21:40 EDT, kaminow@GWIS2.CIRC.GWU.EDU (Beth E.
Kaminow) writes:

> Two examples: my last tattoo is on my lower back. The guy that
> did my tattoo tells me that that's becoming a fairly popular place for
> woman on account of the cropped shirt coming back in vogue (or actually
> those two styles kind of play off each other). I was recently at a party
> where one of the guests gleefully went about lifting his shirt to show
> his nipple ring.

Beth brings up a good point that reflects something John McCreery discusses
in another post. There has always been a relationship between fashion and
body mutilations (Steele; Kunzle; Polhemus; Rudofsky, Thevoz; Brain). Body
mutilations are intended to be permanent and fashion, is by its nature,
non-static. Interesting that today, one is hard pressed to find a model in
NYC or Europe, male or female, who does not sport a tattoo. I can't remember
the last time I saw a CK ad without a tattooed body part in it. Now, does
this place tattoos in the same category as blonde, big breasted, "Kate Moss"
waifism? A trend in the fashion industry? I have always been much more
interested in the bodies that wear the clothes than the clothes themselves.
So, in response to Beth's comment - which came first the chicken or the egg?
Are crop tops in b/c they reveal tattoos on the models who wear them, or does
wearing a crop top lead to wanting a tattoo? Did arm bands become popular
during a fashion phase of sleeveless tops?

- Adrienne