Why Tattoos make my flesh crawl

‘Why Tattoos make my flesh crawl’ is an article by Neil Davenport and was published in the British internet magazine ‘Spiked’ in 2012. In the beginning of the article, Davenport talks about Joanna Southgate, and how her heavily tattooed arms caused a stir at Royal Ascot, after she snuck in and avoided being told to cover them up. Throughout the article Davenport proceeds to discuss the different issues associated with the topic ‘tattoos’ and how it has become mainstream to the point, where it is almost rare to see someone without one.

From the start, he makes his stance clear for example by saying: “acres and acres of flesh vandalized by grubby-looking ink daubings” (p. 1, l. 40). He thinks people “vandalize” their skin by covering it up with ink. Neil Davenport uses his language and argumentation to get his message across.

He uses open argumentation, stating clearly and directly that he disagrees with those who see advantages in tattoos: “The tattoo has always been a mark of powerlessness, not individuality. And now everyone’s got one.” (p. 1, ll 1-2). In this sentence he uses the word ‘powerlessness’, which is a very negative and condescending word, and therefore the harsh tone is already set from the out set. Davenport also talks about how having a tattoo has become mainstream, and now everyone, from footballers to the prime minister’s wife, has their body adorned in artwork and claims that: “not having a tattoo is now a sign of daring rebellion” (p. 2, ll. 48-49)

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