Bodies of Subversion 3: A Secret History of Women and Tattoo

Available at: Amazon | Bookshop | Barnes & Noble | Indiebound


Published in 1997, Bodies of Subversion was the first history of Western women’s tattoo culture, starting in the 1850s. 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; a profile of a heavily tattooed Lutheran pastor, new artists from Virginia Elwood to cover artist Roxx; and Shelley Jackson’s “Skin” project — a short story tattooed word by word on people around the globe.

“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