Tattoo Related Stigma in an Era of CommodificationNameInstitute Tattoo Related Stigma in an Era of Commodification Tattooing has becomeextremely popular in the recent times, and the paramount popularity is found indifferent cultures or communities. This popular creative expression has becomea style statement for innumerable people across the globe.
However, thereremains a stigma on the part of the society that segregates tattooed people,and generalizes them. Capitalism tends to commercialize everything, and itextracts profit out of it. Everything is promoted as a commodity that ispopularized by the machineries of capitalist economy. Tattooing is taken byconsumer culture as a tool to reach out to the masses.
The primary ambition ofconsumerism is to promote tattoos as a popular culture, so that more people areinclined toward getting tattoos having the idea that tattooing is the stylishthing that is in vague in the society. In the age of commercialculture and commodification, tattoo art’s popularity has increased in leaps andbounds. Tattoo is an expression of culture and identity. The stigma fails toconstrict the popularity of tattooing among people, and in stark contrastdefines their personality and creative zeal. In the era of commodification,people are inclined even more toward getting tattoos. The cultural roots oftattoo art make it quite interesting for people to get tattoos.
People areintrigued by the history behind tattoo art that goes back in time. Theacceptance of tattoos by cultural institutions has enhanced the popularity oftattoos among people across the world society. It is the nature of human beingsto stick to culture, and make his existence based on the cultural understandingof the world. Thus, having a tattoo makes a person stand out among all. Morethan just being a fashion statement in the present era of commodification thatgoes on to promote the form of art, tattoo links a person with the culturalroot. Tattoos often become the signifier of the thoughtfulness of a person, andit perfectly portrays what the person wishes to express in front of all. As described in thearticle, “A Deviant Art: Tattoo-Related Stigma in an Era of Commodification”,it has to be understood that “the notion of the self has been destabilizedthrough the commodification of culture and the pressure of refining contingentidentities that are never completed.” In the age ofconsumerism, people are imbibed with the perception that they have tosupplement their identity.
Things like tattoos are portrayed to be a signifierof being cool or trendy. The situation never lets a person feel perfect abouthis or her own self. Thus, people get tattooed to add to their personality andidentity. It is the sense of imperfection that makes people opt for such artforms that they believe would make them different from others.
Tattoos might attributegeneralized characteristic traits to the tattooed people, but these play themajor role in shaping the identity of a person. The generalized characteristicsthat are attributed to a tattooed individual are robustness and courage. Researchhas shown that the people who have tattoos also tend to be more sexually activethan people without tattoos.
It is also believed that tattooed people have moreinclination toward taking risks in the course of life. People going through theprocess of tattooing face the pain that is afflicted by the tattooing needle. However, people can havetheir own behavioural traits that cannot be gauged under the generalizedcharacteristic traits. The sense of individuality that a tattoo brings to aperson is priceless to say the least. Tattoos are taken to reflect the strengthof character of a person as it involves inflicting some amount of pain ononeself during the time of getting the tattoo. Also, permanent tattoos take alot of grit and courage on the part of the individual as the tattoo wouldremain for a lifetime.
The article, “Prison Tattoos as a Reflection of theCriminal Lifestyle”, opines that “images can be chosen idiosyncratically basedon personal reasons or tattoos can be making a statement of identity that canbe directed to others, to oneself, or both.” The commercial cultureaims to gain the best out of the scenario where tattoos have become so popularamong people across the nations. However, while there remains a chance of manypeople being swayed by the consumer culture in the age of commodification, thesignificance of tattoo art in its truest form cannot get lost. As it is opined in the article, “TheCommodification of Body Modification: Tattoos and Piercings from Countercultureto Campus”, “Hegemonic culture is incrementally deconstructed as the symbols ofthose embracing variant identities and ideologies permeate the mainstream.” In the age of LateCapitalism, where the bourgeois culture has taken its nearly-perfect form,being successful in influencing so many aspects of people’s lives byconsumerism, tattoo art with all its aesthetic value and skilfulness is growingwith flying colors.
It is also perhaps voicing the protest in its creative formagainst the ills of commodification. The significance oftattoo art needs to be taken into account in the context of discussionregarding tattoo culture. While tattooing has its own cultural heritage, in theage of Late Capitalism, it is quite tough to remain outside the influence ofthe consumer culture. The debate then lies in the question if tattoo art haslost its cultural relevance in the transcendence of consumerism. It needs to be understoodthat consumer culture aims to profit out of every avenue of human existence.However, that does not necessarily mean the meaningfulness of tattoo art hasdiminished in any way owing to the overpowering presence of capitalist forcesthat has commodified tattoos.
In a way, consumerculture has played a role in popularizing tattoos in a bid to obtain profit.The popularization of tattoo art among people across cultures and communitieshas worked in favour of tattoo art. More and more people have become interestedto learn making tattoos.
The yearly tattoo conventions that take place atdifferent venues across the world testify to the fact. Apart from this, morepeople have started getting tattoos either in a bid to look trendy, or due tothe meaningfulness and uniqueness of the art form. Thus, it can becomprehended that the popularity of tattoo art is definitely on the rise withtime. The commercial culture of the present era has only added to the mass acceptanceof tattoo art. The flip side of the matter is that many people take tattoos tobe signifier of fashion.
The cultural link of the aesthetic meaning of tattooart is not taken into consideration when it is gauged by the looking glass ofcommercial culture. Whatever be it, the heritage and meaningfulness of tattooart can never lose its relevance, in spite of the booming effect ofcommercialization of the art form as a commodity that aims to serve the peoplein lieu of a hollow sense of fashion and self-proclamation. Tattoos wouldflourish among people with time, whatever is the catapulting factor.
Thesociety might leave no stone unturned to stigmatize tattoo art. But, that wouldnot have any negative effect on the popularity or meaningfulness of tattoos.The cultural heritage is too strong to lose its tie with tattoo art in the ageof commodification