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Drag Performativity

Drag is a theatrical entertainment wherein a performer expresses readable identity attributes, most often those associated with gender. Drag performance is grounded in identity manipulation: Its primary purpose is to illustrate that identities such as gender are performative and achievable by various persons. Most often, drag is defined as a fictive, theatrical act that juxtaposes the actor’s lived reality. Traditionally, this is articulated as the fundamental difference between the binary gender expressed onstage (i.e., masculinity or femininity) and the drag artist’s offstage cisgender self (i.e., is “really” a woman or a man). This definition likely stems from drag’s historicized connection to theatrical cross-gender casting. However, any person can perform drag, including people who do not identify as cisgender. In addition, drag performance is not limited ...

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