Tattoos Are A Symbol Of Sexual And Bodily Freedom

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The practice of tattooing has been used around the globe for ages, particularly in tribal societies. However, there has been an increase in this type of body art in Western society over the last century, regardless of its savage-like connotations. Tattoos are viewed by many women as a symbol of control over their bodies, which challenges their historically rooted dependence on men. In this paper, I will argue that although tattoos are a symbol of sexual and bodily freedom for many women, men often interpret this symbolism to mean not simply that women have freedom to make decisions about their bodies, but that women will be promiscuous in their decision making. This interpretation affects interactions and perpetuates stereotypes about tattoos on women 's bodies. In Western society, research shows that men are sensitive to a range of physical cues in women, such as a low waist-to-hip ratio, larger breasts, effective cosmetics use, revealing clothing, and even wearing the color red—signals sexual receptivity (Mehta, Psychology Today). Tattoos are yet another physical cue. Men and women realize the symbolism of sexual and bodily freedom that tattoos portray, but for some reason men think tattooed women will be promiscuous in their decision making. I will begin by offering reasons for this promiscuous stereotype 's development in Western society, followed by its effects on male-female interactions and finally some insight on stereotype reinforcement. In Christine
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