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And that book cited in the quotations i posted about the history of tattooing?

Bodies of Inscription by Margo DeMello

i read that years ago. like… maybe in 2002?

and back then, i thought it was interesting that her thesis was largely about how the middle class ‘appropriated’ tattooing from the working class (inclusive of sailors). [1. note, i am only talking about tattooing in white communities. in the book she also describes the use of tattooing in prisons, the Chican@ community, and with Black american gangs… of course these groups are also considered the ‘working class’ in her thesis. but it is interesting, no? that when we take this into account, it can be seen that the widespread practice of middle class white people doing tattoos is still taken, in part, from poc – yes, i know that the other working class groups she mentions are sailors, labourers, and bikers – none of which are necessarily exclusive of iaopoc.]

which of course is some seriously white bullshit

because her primary lens for looking at and contextualizing contemporary white tattooing is almost entirely based in class…

despite the very real colonial and racial aspects (which for obvious reasons, strongly intersect with class, especially during the time periods that she discusses, and fuck still especially true today).