Burning/Branding/Scratching/Images or designs into the skin
A subsection of body modification that signifies complex costly signaling is scarification. Today ornate scarification is an integral part of the body ornamentation community, yet it has historic roots reaching far back into our evolutionary history. Before individuals began using scarification to systematically ornament their body, scars were the outcome of (sometimes battle) wounds. They were maps to an individuals’ past, each telling a story of past hardships. Some particularly large scars can indicate near death experiences in which an individual overcame great odds to remain alive. Humans quickly realized that the momentary pain of cutting the skin in an artistic fashion resulted in permanent ornate designs in the skin via scarification.
Scarification as a Right of Passage
In Australia, scarification practices are practiced among Aboriginal...
- Zahavi, A. & Zahavi, A. (1997). The handicap principle: A missing piece of Darwin’s puzzle. New York, NY: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar