Veils, Nudity, and Tattoos: The New Feminine Aesthetics

Veils, Nudity, and Tattoos: The New Feminine Aesthetics

Thorsten Botz-Bornstein

Language: English

Pages: 212

ISBN: 1498500463

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub


At first sight, tattoos, nudity, and veils do not seem to have much in common except for the fact that all three have become more frequent, more visible, and more dominant in connection with aesthetic presentations of women over the past thirty years. No longer restricted to biker and sailor culture, tattoos have been sanctioned by the mainstream of liberal societies. Nudity has become more visible than ever on European beaches or on the internet. The increased use of the veil by women in Muslim and non-Muslim countries has developed in parallel with the aforementioned phenomena and is just as striking.
Through the means of conceptual analysis,
Veils, Nudity, and Tattoos: The New Feminine Aesthetics reveals that these three phenomena can be both private and public, humiliating and empowering, and backward and progressive. This unorthodox approach is traced by the three’s similar social and psychological patterns, and by doing so, Veils, Nudity, and Tattoos hopes to sketch the image of a woman who is not only sexually emancipated and confident, but also more and more aware of her cultural heritage.

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would then go for coolness. Apart from that, there are similar rules for both men and women. What distinguishes the macho from the cool male is that the former displays a compulsive masculinity, rigid prescriptions of sexual promiscuity, manipulation, as well as thrill-seeking, and violence (cf. Majors and Billson 1992: 34), while the latter is able to assert and at the same time control his desires. Feminine coolness can only be developed along the same lines. Today, for the Girl Power movement

hangmen” represents a basic teaching. There is indeed “a resistance towards revolt due to the human fear of giving up the hardship caused by something that is known in favor of an unknown liberty whose dangers are not identified” (Gori 2013: 55). Coolness as a concept is always ready to bear a part of the burden of “false consciousness” because, by definition, coolness involves any consciousness into paradoxes. Logically, coolness exists only as long as there is some sort of oppression or at

nudity” paradigm has still another function: “In Christianity, women’s cover is a symbol of men’s power over women because men are regarded as the ‘image and glory of God’” (Burns 2007: 147). (It is interesting to note that the old custom of tattooing female bodies on male bodies—often presented as a celebration of women—can be understood as the continuation of this myth: woman is made flesh by man by making her part of his body. See Kang 2012, page 70.) This means that any sense of shame is

represents a consistent attempt at freeing democratic society of the barrier to the nude body that has been erected through Puritan, hypocritical, and oppressive-patriarchal devices. In spite of the certainly relevant skepticism voiced by blogger Milva V, Magnet, and others, in principle, SG attempts to function beyond both virtualizing body negation and materializing body cult. For SG, the ontological grounding of the body has become architectural and spatial, and tattoos help the body to shift

that has been enclosed to them by the sender, but also on the environment within which this new aesthetic play of signifiers is enacted. And this environment is equally ambivalent, which is the reason why those movements hit the nerve of the time. For example, in our highly complex mediatized and virtualized environments, one and the same expression of nudity can appear as innocent and as lewd. The ambivalence is reinforced by the tension existing between personal moral values and the values of

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