(I am) just trying to get one with my new name Samana [sic]” (J.V. Lee & Prentice-Gimson, 2004; see also N.A.G., 2009a, 2010a). He asked for a different tattoo, and was again met with “that weird stuff like a heart on my arm.” (Prentice-Gimson, 2004. The reader should bear in mind that it is a common practice of the media to present a number of different possible identities of the same person and therefore present all possible variants as “the” (K.W. Johnson, 1994. On tattooing the body, the Australian media use a technique of presenting a “circled-circle” tattoo. A more familiar method of tattooing is the circle of life, in which a name of another person is used; see the article from the Australian newspaper The Age of Reason, which is cited in the footnote at the beginning of this article.)
It seems that the tattooing method is a way of separating the person from their history and their cultural identity in order to present them publicly as a single person. I can not identify myself as Samoan. For example, I am very interested in music but my ancestors have no interest in it. That’s not how I was raised. It may help some to remember this, if such a habit becomes a part of the process: there is no way you can get to know yourself without knowing what others are like and how they relate.
The article by Prentice-Gimson (2004) states that, “The best way to explain the identity or the identification of individuals is the idea of the ‘circle of origin’. In this way it is possible to say if a country is ethnically homogenous, or even if a given people have been in the same place for ages. In most of the ethnological studies of Samoan/Pacific Island people, identity development has been studied on a cross-cultural basis. This process has been examined by measuring the degree to which people associate themselves with their cultural roots; by asking them how they relate to various social or cultural groups; and, finally, by studying the impact of identity development and changes in group attitudes on social status.” It would seem this process, rather than a single person, would be responsible for Samoan identification: “The best way to explain the identity or the identification of individuals is the idea of the ‘circle of origin’.” The first and most important question asked by
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