Do we know what day it is, Pride Palace family? You guessed it: It’s International Drag Day! This day is celebrated annually around the world on July 16th. International Drag Day is commemorated to celebrate the drag culture in the world and give this community more exposure. As part of the LGBTQ+ community, the drag culture undergoes several instances of hate and discrimination in their daily lives. As a reminder, we are here to change that. Today (and every single day) is a day to celebrate the fantastic drag culture!
The Pride Palace team has rounded up a few frequently asked questions and misconceptions about the drag community. As we know, knowledge is power! By educating ourselves, we are supporting not only the drag community but every single marginalized group out there.
“Drag” can mean different things to different people, but the term most often refers to the performance of femininity, masculinity, and other types of gender expression. Doing drag generally means dressing up and presenting yourself differently than your everyday gender. This is mainly for expression and performance.
Drag queens are drag artists who may or may not identify as men and present or express themselves in feminine ways as part of their performance. Similarly, drag kings are drag artists who may or may not identify as women and present or express themselves in masculine ways as part of their performance. Many drag queens identify as men as drag kings as women, but people of any gender identity can immerse themselves in the beautiful drag culture.
Longer than you might expect. Men playing female roles started almost the moment theatre did. Until the 19th century, women acting on stage was considered an immoral occupation, so it was the men who played female roles. However, this was hardly the start of drag culture. Drag as a form of art and culture started flourishing in music halls and French theatre such as vaudeville when men acting as female impersonators rose to popularity. Once the 20th century arrived, female impersonation became tied to the LGBTQ+ community.
No! Although drag culture is primarily tied to the LGBTQ+ community, not all drag queens and kings are gay. People who choose to do drag can be of absolutely any gender or sexual identity. The term “drag artist” is becoming more and more popular to be more inclusive of all identities in drag culture.
There are many ways to become more educated on drag culture. A simple, obvious answer is the Internet. There is a lot of information online, and sometimes doing a little research can go a long way. However, many books, movies, and TV shows are also beneficial in learning more about drag artists and their stories. Perhaps one of the most famous TV shows shedding light on drag culture is RuPaul’s Drag Race. In this American reality competition series, the well-known drag queen RuPaul Charles searches for “America’s next drag superstar.” However you choose to educate yourself, there are lots of resources to help!
We hope that you have gained some insight on the marvelous drag culture and learned something new. It is never too late to educate yourself on a subject you may not be knowledgeable about, and that includes drag culture. Make sure to celebrate passion, expression, and dedication not only today on International Drag Day, but every day of the year!