Electronic Theses and Dissertations


Robbie Luten



Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Counseling Psychology

Committee Chair

Sara Bridges

Committee Member

Susan Nordstrom

Committee Member

Kade Hiestand

Committee Member

Rosie Davis


Drag queens of color represent a unique perspective as marginalized advocates within the LGBTQ+ community. To understand both their experiences and also their advocacy needs, this study utilized a narrative inquiry approach to address the following research questions: RQ1: What inspires drag queens of color to pursue drag?, RQ2: What influences the development of their identities and personas?, and RQ3: In what ways do drag queens of color use their personas to advocate for and defend the right to express various genders and sexual orientations? The findings of this study are represented through a composite character based on the life experiences and identities of the two participants and was depicted in a fictional composite narrative constructed from the data gathered to illustrate the way participants understand of their experiences, develop their identities, and engage in advocacy work. The study found that the participants developed their drag personas based on their experiences with drag and with developing their identities as LGBTQ+ individuals. Findings also indicated that the participants experienced discrimination such as threats of physical and verbal violence. Finally, the study found that participants also hoped to advocate for the LGBTQ+ community. Connections to previous literature, limitations, and recommendations for future research are discussed.


Data is provided by the student.

Library Comment

Dissertation or thesis originally submitted to ProQuest


Open Access