Images and Ink: What Do Tattoos Represent?

The objective of this lesson is for students to write a well thought out op-ed piece on the cultural perception of tattoos and defend their stance orally.

Tattoos have had a long-standing history in many cultures. The name tattoo is actually derived from the Polynesian word tatau, which is a traditional Samoan tattoo that covers a male from the waist down to his knees. Once associated with sailors, gang members, or circus performers, these markings are now part of the mainstream culture. Many critics argue that tattoos look unprofessional and sometimes can even make people look trashy. Others say that tattoos are a form of art and expression and should be held in high regard like any other piece of artwork. These individuals continue by saying that tattoos reflect self-control, empowerment, and a means of creating a sense of self.