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"Well written and wonderfully detailed, this is an absolute must for anyone seeking knowledge of the real roots of ethnic tattooing practices...
the nature of the research is outstanding" SkinDeep



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• SkinDeep – Read what the UK's leading Tattoo Magazine said about this book

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The Tattooing Arts of Tribal Women 

 

 

Lars Krutak

Buy this book now   24.99
Paperback
  ISBN 1898948759

Buy this book now   45.00
Hardback
  ISBN 1898948742 

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This lavishly illustrated account of the vanishing art of women's tribal tattooing is the record of tattoo anthropologist Lars Krutak's ten-year research with indigenous peoples around the globe. Spanning five continents, The Tattooing Arts of Tribal Women explores the personal and collective acts of human transformation through the tradition of indelible marking among indigenous peoples, past and present.

Throughout history, women have tattooed living skin to beautify, heal, empower, or carry the body into the afterlife. And as tattoo bearers were participants in shared pain and recuperation, the skin was the location where identity and experience met. Tattoo anchored indigenous values on the skin by creating a living canvas rooted in traditional practice. As ritual, tattooing re-enacted myth: it imitated the actions of the gods and ancestors who sacrificed their own skins to make them more lasting and sacred.

With over 250 colour and b&w illustrations, The Tattooing Arts of Tribal Women not only examines the history and significance of tattooing through a comparative study of tattoo patterns and techniques, but also through interviews with the indigenous people who created them. The result is a comprehensive overview that establishes new ways of seeing and reading the messages encoded in ancient and more contemporary forms of tattooing through an exploration of these traditions worldwide.

The author will be appearing in a forthcoming television series for the Discovery Channel, focusing on indigenous body modification practices worldwide.

– 288 pages with 260 illustrations, many in color

Published by Bennett & Bloom, 2007

 

TATTOOING ARTS OF TRIBAL WOMEN

Contents


Preface and Acknowledgments
Map of Tattooing Peoples and Areas
Introduction
A comment on the 'Tribal'
The colonial gaze
The tattooing arts of tribal women


1. NORTH AFRICA, IRAQ AND THE BALKANS
Berber tattooists and their motifs
Arab tattooing
Kurdish tattooing
Balkan tattooing
The Vlachs

2. TAIWAN AND BORNEO
Atayal tattoo artists
Familiar spirits
Paiwan tattoo artists
Dayaks of Borneo
Spirits, gods, ancestors, and the circle of life
Iban
Orang Ulu of the Rejang River
Kayan
Kayan priestesses
Sihan and Lahanan
Prelude of change

3. PAPUA NEW GUINEA AND EASTER ISLAND
Linguistic concepts of tattooing: the raw and the cooked
Papuan tattoo patterns
Easter Island
The vanishing Rapa Nui tattoo
Symbolic dimensions of women's tattooing
Men's tattoo motifs

4. JAPAN, NORTHWEST COAST AND ARCTIC
Ainu tattoos, girdles, and symbolic embroidery
Ainu crests
Tlingit and Haida of the Northwest Coast
The Arctic: Circumpolar regions
Tattoos and symbolic pigments
Concepts of tattooing in the Arctic
Women's facial and body tattoos
Medicinal function of tattoos
Tattooing as a form of acupuncture
Aleut
Nosepins
Ear ornaments
Labrets
Piercing medicine
Transgendered piercings and tattoos
Aleut adornment

5. SOUTH AMERICA, CALIFORNIA AND THE AMERICAN SOUTHWEST
Coastal Peru
Blood sacrifice in ancient Peru
Of birds, lizards, serpents, and centipedes
The Mundurucú of Amazonia
Of myths and birds
Of birds and men
The Mundurucú headhunt and trophy heads
The Gran Chaco
Thwarting spirits and the implications of flowing blood
California and the American Southwest
Tattooed Skin Conclusion: Marks of Transformation

Notes
Literature

Index
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