Drag: Political Acts of Performance, Identity, Celebration, & Making Space
Foundational Knowledge & Learning How to Learn: Drag is a politically-fuellled art form that has existed for a long time for queer and trans individuals of color and other individuals of varying gender and sexual identities. This form of art allows us to build community, create a culture, mock gender rules and boundaries, be ourselves, be bigger than ourselves, be someone new...drag performers were critical in historic moments of resistance as well as celebration. Drag performers having occupied a large swathe of non-cisheterosexual history is reason enough to seek what knowledge(s) and insights they can provide for these communities for higher education. More information on the foundational knowledge I developed about drag performance in particular, and art and expression in general, can be found within the right column. Queer theory, developed in Intersectional Inquiry and Gender & Sexualities, marry with performance to break down the performativity not only of gender and sexuality, but nearly all aspects of our lives. What makes a woman? What constitutes gender, and how can we dabble in it, play in it?
This performance was my second in the Denver area- During school breaks, I like to dedicate my time to performing in charity-based events within the local community and this was a toy drive for local youth where we raised over $200 in a matter of hours.
This performance was the first-ever drag show at St. Michael's, this event was a coordination between their Gender & Sexuality Class and myself. As a religious institution, making space for gender variant lives is not the easiest thing to do, and this is a particular moment of pride to have the opportunity to have a space to express care for a community.
Mhisty Knights: at 2:00
Cherie Insanity: at 6:20
Edda Belle: at 9:20
Aurora Risay: at 15:00
Mhisty Knights second performance: at 24:00
Miss Crime Scene: at 34:30
Paula Tricks (me!): at 45:00 (Don't mind me, I just slipped once or twice)
Luci Furr-Matrix: at 49:00
Why It's Important Academically
While drag performances are rarely considered in the fields of higher education and academia, the performing arts in general-- of which drag is but one medium-- is filled with the potential to "allow us to shed light on the necessary correctives ethnographers could make to more accurately communicate the relationship between knower and known" (p. 435).
Why It&#39;s Important To Me Emotionally
My family has almost always been my friends and fellow performers. Where else would I find people who understand what it means to be trans and a drag performer? Where else can I find space to be authenitcally me? My respite was my community, and is a destabilizing of cisnormativity.