Special Topics: Women's Studies
Professor Soyoung Park
Is Drag Really Offensive to Women?
Judith Butler in her article Gender is Burning questions whether or not findings, spoken from a variety of sources, about the provocative, imitative, and socially destructive nature of drag are true. Butler breaks down the thinking of feminist theorists Marilyn Frye and Janice Raymond. "The tradition within feminist thought has argued that drag is offensive to women and that it is an imitation based in ridicule and degradation" (Butler, 385). Then, decisively, Butler brings her own opinion into the matter. She states that, "...This 'being a man' and this 'being a woman' are internally unstable affairs" (Butler, 385).
In truth, drag is not at all a form of misogyny. The ambiguous nature of gender does not allow for a true definition on what is for men and what is for women. Drag is an entirely difference subculture in itself that presents itself outside of the social norm.
Realness is another important factor within the drag community, and quite frankly, by emulating this realness, there is a sense of desire to become a woman in one aspect or another. It is not damaging toward women to be emulated by drag queens- rather, by leaving the notion of modern society's ideals, drag queens have stepped into the spotlight of personal prejudice by the very type of people they wish to become.