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Title: The consumption of tattoos and tattooing : the body as permanent text
Author: Follett, John Alan
ISNI:       0000 0004 2679 9228
Awarding Body: University of Wolverhampton
Current Institution: University of Wolverhampton
Date of Award: 2009
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In this thesis, I investigate permanence through exploring tattoo consumption in terms of the social-historical context of being tattooed. The analysis is based on four years of data collection adopting a grounded theory approach. I present an analysis of how permanence occurs in terms of tattoo consumption, with particular interest in the physical permanence in relation to identity creation. This is set within the framework of Consumer Culture Theory (CCT). The reason for this is twofold, firstly to illustrate the ability of using tattooing as an instrument to investigate permanence within CCT. Secondly, to show the lack of use of the socio-historical perspective within such an investigation, and to show that the use of such data is a valid strategy and which adds depth and context to such an investigation. Furthermore, I suggest that tattoo consumption has become a site of embodied expression that is bounded by physicality, and permanence. I present a typology of tattooed consumers based on levels of commitment and explore in depth two main categories, physicality, and, permanence. I find that the physical permanence is shown through the commitment to tattoo usage. Its permanent nature determines the tattoo as an act of consumption that is dualistic in nature; both accepted, and yet equally rejected, which is seen within the consumers‘ negotiation of its use, in terms of mimicry and placement. Being tattooed represents a form of consumption that contravenes certain rules and norms of society, and yet at the same time is the basis for community membership and adherence to a set of sub-cultural norms and values.
Supervisor: Goulding, Christina Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Marketing ; Grounded theory ; Tattoos ; Tattooing ; Consumer behaviour ; Permanence