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Inked: A 5,000 Year Old Tattooing Tradition Among Us

1 min read

Presented by Melanie E Magdalena, University of New Mexico, Department of Anthropology for the AGSU Conference at UNM.

Play: Inked: A 5,000 Year Old Tradition Watch on YouTube

Body adornment with images and symbols is prominent in our time. The meanings of tattoos are personal and vary widely. In antiquity, spanning thousands of years across many cultures, the presence of body art is a unique demonstration of how people around the world chose to express themselves. Today, the presence of ink on the body is both praised and disdained. Permanent designs, whether elaborate or plain, serve as personal status symbols, declarations of love, forms of punishment, symbols of religious beliefs, amulets, and even just adornments. Should present societies judge ink negatively, or accept and learn about the marked individual's life using their skin just as researchers do for those of the past? This is the story of Inked.

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