“Ladies and genders,
…But I can tell you, you have NOT. The purist drag queen community is shaking on its full coverage foundation since a girl from Belgium decided to turn her brain on and ask herself a fundamental question even Quora can’t answer:
“Can anyone, and therefor also ME as a woman, be a drag queen?“
Old-school drag purists: (Gag)
Now this is how it all started…
Me: As you all know I, Evelien Delgouffe, am a woman of many faces and interests. I am interested in everything that lights a little spark in my eyes and makes me forget the mess that we as humans have to face on a daily basis. Yes, I like to live in a self (wo)manifested dream world.
Therefor I am a fan of movies, series, adventure, science fiction, comics, cosplay, fantasy creatures, make-up… etc!
And since a while, my most favorite way to let off steam after a rough day is watching 1 or 10 episodes of ‘RuPaul’s Drag Race’. It’s a little hard to explain, but those men dressing up as queens makes me feel good about myself.
You: “Ahm… About yourself Evvy?”
Me: “Well yeah, whenever I watch an episode of RuPaul I feel a small change in my behavior. As if I’m suddenly sliding down a rainbow of Charisma, Uniqueness, Nerve and Talent. Feeling good about myself and my womanhood.”
I am also inspired by the different looks and how these queens carry themselves as almost alien like, supernatural creatures.
… Vogue-ing, parading, skedaddling, lipsync-ing and even death dropping for their lives.
… Topped with the occasional bitch fight of course.
I decided to take my fascination to the next level and dive deeper into this magical world of drag.
Since I am an investigative journalist (and not a ‘wannabe’ like my arch rival Lois Lane; she’s a drag but definitely not a queen…) I decided to do my research properly.
Now, asking the question ‘Can a women be a drag queen?’ turned out to be a stupid one since 1 search entry in Google taught me that women across the planet have been dressing up as drag queens (and I don’t mean drag kings, fyi) for many years.
Why didn’t I know?!
According to my good friend Google:
See? ‘Artists of all sexualities’. So it’s totally fine for women to dress up as drag queens too!
Well… not really.
To begin with. Female drag queens are nicknamed ‘faux queens’, which is not really a name to take pride in.
Further research taught me there’s actually an ongoing vitriol surrounding female drag queens. Old-school drag purists don’t like women to act or perform as drag queens at all and even boycot them.
You: “If men dress up as women…Doesn’t it make more sense for women to dress up as men… in order to bypass that nasty ‘faux queen’ nickname?”
Me: “Well yeah, but for me, aesthetics-wise, it is much more interesting to dress up as a drag queen and explore new depths of my femininity.”
Old-school drag purists: “But why would a woman want to parody a woman? It’s a complete oxy… oxymo…. a complete TRAVESTY!”
Me: “Look errr… girl… That’s just one transvestite calling another transvestite a transvestite… You know, you really shouldn’t put people into boxes like that.”
Me: While let’s face it: drag queens would be nowhere without women AMMARIGHT?”
Old-school drag purists:
Doing this research I suddenly realized that the idea only man can be drag queens is unfortunately also promoted by my favorite TV show. In ‘RuPaul’s Drag Race’ only male identified drags can compete. Faux queens are not welcome. Transsexuals neither. #Dafuq?
I wondered what RuPaul’s opinion on the topic of faux queens was. Does he actually support ladies in drag? Or not? Big was my grief when I discovered an interview of RuPaul with The Guardian in 2017 where he made the following statement:
RuPaul: “Drag loses its sense of danger and its sense of irony once it’s not men doing it, because at its core it’s a social statement and a big F-you to male-dominated culture. So for men to do it, it’s really punk rock, because it’s a real rejection of masculinity.”
Old-school drag purists:
In the meantime RuPaul has publicly changed his opinion on the topic but still, coming from an LGBTQ ambassador, it was quite a controversial thing to say. Why should drag queen-ing be a ‘men-only’ sport?
Old-school drag purists:
“I’m sorry Miss Delgouffe but we have to stop you right there: why would you even bother to do drag up? Why would you emulate what you AL-READY are? What is the illusion???”
Me: “I’m pretty sure when I cover my eyebrows with a glue stick and draw on new ones, that’s called an illusion…”
Old-school drag purists: “Funny how women always depend on men to give the right example.”
RuPaul: “The time has come for you to form a conclusion, Evelien.”
Me: “Well hang on RuPaul, let me just call up a dear friend of mine to close this case on my behalf…”
Me: “Miss G, I urgently need your help on something. Could you come to RuPaul’s ‘Werk Room’ real quick?”
(5 min later)
Me: “Queens, I present to you the only woman who has ever been really accepted for performing as a drag queen. Bow down for the one and only…. LADY GAGA!!!”
Me: “Now that I have all you queens’ attention. I would like to let this marvelous artist explain to you what drag, regardless of gender, is all about to her:
Me: “See? We are all looking to fill up voids in our lives. Whether it’s with money or with glitter. We are all eager to lift ourselves to the most fabulous echelons of whatever universe we want to belong to. Faux queens or real queens, in drag there is no room for misogyny, sexism nor racisme.”
“It’s about expressing what femininity means to us and defying sex-role stereotypes. It’s about art and performance. Whether it’s political, aesthetical or just satirical or for entertainment purposes. It shouldn’t be a ‘boys only club’ since we have so much to learn form each other.”
“Let us try to see drag as ‘genderless’ until it becomes the new norm and (meno)pause this ongoing bitch fight right here.”
“Or to say it with the words of a wise wo-man:”
Me: “Heu…well thanks Momma Ru, but I actually meant that other thing you always say…”
Now can I get an Amen up in here?
This blog post was a sponsored feel good message brought to you by ‘I don’t give a Tuck’. You can be a beautiful individual no matter what. Appearance and good looks are mostly a matter of behavior and perception. If beauty is in the eye of the beholder, then add on as many illusions as you want until YOU, the beholder in the mirror, finally feels comfortable with what you see…PS: The Kardashians do it every day.
After publishing this blog only one drag queen has decided to take a step back (…)
…But now that the rest of the purist drag community has opened the boundaries, all ‘femme bodied individuals who want to try on drag every once and a while, for real or just for fun’ are more than welcome to play along!
As for me, I thought about where drag will take me. Since ‘RuPaul’s Drag Race’ maybe isn’t that representative for my understanding of the drag art, I will take my interest just a tiiiiiiiiiny step further….
…By going to a show in my local area and hope someone mistakes me for a real guy!
To be continued?
All in favor say AAAYE!