22. January 2024

#ExzellentErklärt Podcast: Sinah Kloß on "Tattoos as Instruments of Power" #ExzellentErklärt Podcast: Sinah Kloß on "Tattoos as Instruments of Power"

Exciting news! The latest episode of the #ExzellentErklärt Podcast is out featuring BCDSS research group leader Dr. Sinah Kloß!

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In South America, you can still find some elderly women with tattoos on their forearms depicting, amongst other symbols, their husbands' initials. These are women whose ancestors were brought from India to the former British and Dutch colonies as contract laborers. Were these tatoos a deliberate display of identity or were they forced upon them - and to what degree and by whom? What was their impact? Now considered as outdated, this tattoo tradition still provides us with an insight into a society's social fabric, where tattoos serve as "instruments of power". 

In the episode, Sinah Kloß sheds light on how tattoos reflect social hierarchies. She explores how tattoos contribute to the construction of identity, how colonialism has influenced tattoo practices, and how tattoos became symbols of resistance.

Tune in to episode #40: Tätowierungen: Tattoos als Instrumente der Macht

Dr. Sinah Kloß is a social anthropologist and research group leader at the BCDSS. Her main research areas are anthropology of religion, body politics and embodiment, material culture studies, tattooing, clothing and dress, transnational migration, and Postcolonial and Southern theory. She focuses on the Caribbean, especially Guyana and Suriname, but also specializes in the transcultural flows between India and the Caribbean.

"Exzellent erklärt" is a joint podcast project hosted by the German Clusters of Excellence. The monthly episodes feature the breadth of the 57 Clusters' research topics. You can find all episodes of "Exzellent erklärt" here.

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