Faux queens—fauxing the real: Biological women, the art of drag, and why the real is drag and/or how I became a drag queen and/or how to paint a drag mug
Can women be drag queens? Is it possible to expand definitions of drag to include those who do not perform their gender opposite? What is a faux queen? Are faux queens drag queens? I examine these and other questions in detail in this work by bridging three unique and very different perspectives: academic, observer, and faux queen. Entering into the dialogue from my personal faux queen experiences, I begin by highlighting drag's history in order to show faux queens as the next evolution of drag and situate her within discourses of drag, gender identity, and gender performance. I argue that drag queens construct and perform their own queered femininity, what I call flamboyant femininity, and illustrate how the faux queen connects and models herself in the drag queen's flamboyantly feminine image. I show that the faux is unique in her gender performance and gender identity through examining her amid various other female performances of drag. I conclude by exploring how the faux impacts gender identity by surveying works and individuals that place faux queen and/or drag queen as a potential transgender identity. Because drag is a visual aesthetic, I include a photo journal, Real to Faux, capturing my process of becoming a faux/drag queen.