Getting Inked at a Tattoo Convention: Subjectivity and Belonging within an Alternative Cultural Heterotopia¹

Sebastiano Benasso, Luisa Stagi


The article explores the Tattoo Convention environment as a privileged context to observe the power relations and the negotiation of meanings framed by the tattoo culture. We focus our analysis on the dynamics that regard the field of Tattoo Convention as an alternative cultural heterotopia (St. John, 2011), giving particular attention to the tension between the desire for community and belonging - which shapes the bio-sociability (Ortega, 2004; Ferreira, 2009) in the space of the convention - and the pursuit of a unique and exclusive body-project. We see broader dynamics of conflict - between inclusion and exclusion, “cool” and mainstream, standardisation and artistry - resonating with this tension. Within this frame, corporal dimensions such as the pain take on the intensification of the biographical meanings (Le Breton, 2002) for individuals and liturgical element for the community.

Full Text:



Copyright Licenza Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (CC-BY)

 - Peer Reviewed Journal

Indexed on: Google Scholar, ProQuest - Sociological Abstracts, Ebsco Discovery Service, Scopus, ERIH PLUS, DOAJ.

Scientific Magazine classified for ANVUR (Resolution n.89 del 6th November 2012)

Scientific Magazine class A according to ANVUR (Resolution of 11th August 2020)

ISSN 2239-8589 | Managing Editor: Debora Viviani | Editor in Chief: Paola Di Nicola