Bodies of Subversion 2: A Secret History of Women and Tattoo

With 100 new photos (including Janis Joplin, Natasha Kai, and Margaret Cho) additional historical information, and a chapter on tattooing trends in the new millennium, the updated Bodies is virtually a new book. Of interest: new applications such as therapeutic tattoos used for women coming out of gangs, prisons, and situations of domestic abuse; the impact of reality shows on the industry; passages on a heavily tattooed Lutheran pastor, a performance artist covered with holocaust imagery, new artists from Virginia Elwood to cover artist Roxx, and Shelley Jackson’s “Skin” project.

“In this provocative work full of intriguing female characters from tattoo history, Margot Mifflin makes a persuasive case for the tattooed woman as an emblem of female self-expression.”
–Susan Faludi

“…Essential reading for anyone interested in the subject.”
–Ed Hardy

“…Insightfully chronicles the saga of skin as signage…”
–Barbara Kruger

“Perceptive and moving…insinuating and complex….’Bodies of Subversion’ is delicious social history.”
—Dwight Garner, The New York Times

“Margot Mifflin has done the work of preserving and bringing to life this history of western women’s tattoo in her book…it’s brimming with interesting tales flanked by even more interesting images.”
–Boing Boing

“More than just a photographic history of this deep subculture. It is a close study of women during a period of historic limitations and social mobility, beginning to break barriers by exploring alternative ideas of beauty and self expression.”

Bodies of Subversion 2 in the news:

“Bodies of Subversion,” Boing Boing, May 15, 2015.

(review) Top Pick: “Bodies of Subversion,” a History Of Women Subverting Cultural Norms via Tattoos, (The) Absolute, March 20, 2014.

“La Serpiente Tatuada de la Madre de  Churchill,” El Pais  (Madrid) Sep. 18, 2014.

“Donne e tattoo: un tabù duro a morire,” DBeauty/La Repubblica, April 1, 2014.

“The Art and Power of Women’s Tattoos,” CUNY Book Beat, March 24, 2014.

“Il corpo è mio e lo coloro come voglio io,” La Stampa (Turin), March 11, 2014.

“Women’s Ink,” Inked Magazine,  March 3, 2014.

“Interview: Marisa Kakoulas and Margot Mifflin on Tattooing in the New Millennium,” Cool Hunting,  March 3, 2014.

Margot Mifflin and Stephanie Tamez on Katie Couric’s show, “Why Women Are Getting More Tattoos.” aired Feb. 24, 2014.

The Tattooed Ladies,” CUNY Matters, Fall 2013.

“Painted Ladies” by Anna Britten, Simple Things Magazine, September 2013.

Tattoo Extreme (Thailand/Asia), August 2013.

(review) “Our Bodies, Our Ink: ‘Bodies of Subversion’ Explores Women with Tattoos” by Dwight Garner, The New York Times, July 3, 2013. (reprinted in the International Herald Tribune July 9, 2013 and The South China Morning Post July 14, 2013).

(review), July 14, 2013.

“Tattoo Education: Bodies of Subversion,” Skin Deep, April, 2013.

(review) “The Colorful, Subversive History of Women With Tattoos,” by Steven Heller, The Atlantic, April 4, 2013.

“Women and Tattoos Throughout History” by Monica Bielanko,, April 1, 2013.

“AHA Advocate Talk: Margot Mifflin,” Awareness, Harmony, Acceptance Advocates (Ball State University “Breaking the Prejudice” Project).

“The Body As Battlefield,” Stern (Germany), March 15, 2013.

(review) “Tattoo Book Draws on Women,” North Adams Transcript, March 8, 2013.

Magazine (Occidental College), “Bookshelf,” spring 2013.

Interview on “NightHawk” with Geoff Currier, CJOB, Winnipeg. Feb 15, 10:00.

“Tattoos–A Secret History of Female Body Art,” article/slideshow: Channel 4 (UK); video, Feb. 1, 2013.

“Bodies of Subversion: A Secret History of Women and Tattoo,” Needles and Sins, Feb 1., 2013.

(review) “It’s Not  A Man’s World” by Jessica Dolese, Inked Magazine, February, 2013.

“The Girl With the First Tattoo,” Grazia Magazine (UK) Feb. 2013.

“Tattoos’ Impressions in Print and Film” by Eve Kahn, The New York Times, Jan. 31 2013.

“A Fascinating History of Women with Tattoos,” The Daily Mail UK, Jan. 31, 2013.

“From Kat Von D to Lena Dunham: An Amazing History of Women and Tattoos, Flavorpill, Jan 29, 2013.

Late Night Live with Phillip Adams (ABC Australia), Jan. 29, 2013.

“The Girl With the First Tattoo,” Yahoo Daily Life (UK and Ireland), Jan 20, 2013.

“A Secret History of Women and Tattoo,” The New Yorker (Photobooth), January 16, 2013.

“Not Oprah’s Book Club: Bodies of Subversion,” Feministing, January 18, 2013.

“The History of Tattooed Ladies Gets Expanded,” Bust Magazine, Jan 8 2013.

“Preview Margot Mifflin’s Updated History Of Tattooed Women and Tattoo,” Papermag, October 17, 2012

“First Look: Bodies of Subversion:A Secret History of Women and Tattoo,” New York Magazine’s The Cut blog, Jan. 7, 2013.

“Local Pages:  A Secret History of Women and Tattoo by Ali Jackson-Jolley, Tarrytown-Sleepy Hollow Patch, March 21, 2013