Date of Award

Spring 5-4-2024

Document Type


Degree Name

MA - Master of Arts


Expressive Therapies


Madoka Urhausen


The author explores the Asian queer narrative by investing in related articles and literature on body art in this capstone thesis. In the thesis, body art is identified as a way of self-expression that serves as a creative outlet for play, artistic expression, and advocacy. The concept of body modifications, such as tattoos or piercings, can be viewed as acts of resistance to challenging societal norms. In a larger scope, it can also include changing body shape, such as fitness and cosmetic surgery (Pitts, 2000). People engage in body modification practices to express themselves to the world, show creativity, and cooperate with their ideas of society (Lu & Hu, 2021; Pitts, 2000; Weiler et al., 2021). However, the interpretation of body modifications within the queer community is far from straightforward, given the diverse motivations and contexts shaping individual choices (Klesse, 2007). This complexity is particularly pronounced when examining queer cultures in Asian countries, where research simplifies the idea of “a culture of Western versus Eastern” and fails to capture the intricate dynamics at play (Lu & Hu, 2021; Henley & Porath, 2021). According to Liu (2021), these Western versus Eastern binary opposition approaches overlook crucial factors, such as class, origin, race, and power dynamics inherent in Asian societies. Thus, a more comprehensive understanding of queer body expression in Asia necessitates a holistic consideration of these multifaceted influences.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.




The author owns the copyright to this work.