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Deviance of Body Decorations(piercings and tattoos) - Essay Example

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Deviance of Body Decorations(piercings and tattoos)

There are several reasons that researchers believe motivate people to get tattoos or piercings. Decorations and modifications are mostly done to enhance beauty, define individualism, express creativity, encounter sexual stimulation, prove endurance etc and sometimes these are done for no specific reasons at all (Wohlrab et al, 2007,p92). Today in mainstream America body modifications have become fairly prevalent however today “are no statistically signi?cant differences between those who are pierced or not, or among those with any escalating number of piercings, with respect to any measure of legal deviance “ (Koch et al,2010,p158) which shows that body modifications do not always imply deviant acts. According to studies conducted on individuals with tattoos and piercing it was seen that men and women with these modification have high suicide attempts thereby establishing the fact that body modification may also be cry for help (Jancin,2005, p33). There are many sociological theories to understand why an individual opts for a body modification which is permanent in nature. From a sociological viewpoint intentional body modification might be an indication of deviant behavior in individuals. Extensive sociological analysis of deviant behavior among the population since the same social behaviors which give rise to socially acceptable behavior also gives rise to deviant or socially unacceptable behavior. It has been seen that deviance and control are intimately linked “through an extensive web of functional interrelationships, with various other elements of a sociocultural complex (Schur,1969, p309). When it comes to explaining or defining deviance or deviant behavior there are two different schools of thought namely positivist and Constructivist. The positivist approach assumes three things- absolutism, objectivism and determinism. According to this perspective Defiant behavior is real i.e. the behavior itself has some qualities that demarcates it from the normal. Furthermore the individual also portrays certain characteristics which are slightly or highly different from conventional. Therefore the positivist sees deviant behavior as a characteristic of the person himself. Again according to positivists deviant behavior is something almost physical which may be studied directly. Positivists also believe that deviant behavior is a phenomenon that is often caused by causes or reasons which are far out of reach and control of the individual (Thio et al,2013,p5). The constructionist perspective is starkly different from that of the positivist. A relativist view is held by the constructionist i.e. they are not characteristics but a simply believed to be so. According to them deviant behavior is a label which arises from the people’s minds. For constructionists deviance is a subjective matter. It is supposed o be felt, understood, though about and reflected upon. As compared to the Positivist’s objective approach Constructionist do not presume deviant behavior to be immoral, illegal or unpleasant. Lastly it is the Constructionists who believe that deviance or deviant behavior is a personal act or a voluntary act which merely depends on an individuals’ will. This is again different from the Positivist perspective because according to the positivist certain factors causing deviance are out of control and therefore ...Show more
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Date: Deviance of Body decorations Body decorations have been prevalent for centuries. In the olden times people, mostly tribal, used them to symbolize something or someone; however body decorations such as tattooing and body piercing are much in vogue today .For most of these modification enthusiasts the body has become a canvas…
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