Drag, most simply defined, is the act of performing a gender identity other than one’s own. At its core, doing drag involves the manipulation of bodies and identities through performance. Drag has been a fixture in gay and lesbian subcultures since the mid-20th century. Drag has provided a safe space for gender creativity; has offered an outlet for protest against homophobia and heteronormativity; and has been used to raise money and attention for LGBTQ causes and communities, specifically during the AIDS pandemic. This entry discusses the existing research on drag performance, details the major theoretical debates about drag, considers how drag is racialized, and concludes with a description of drag in a global world.

Historically, although as recently as World War II drag was performed ...

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