Inside The Colorful World Of Drag

Drag Profile Closeup

Source: WordPress

In any society, peculiar institutions tend to grow up that only have relevance—or make any sense at all—within the context of that society. The unique subculture of Drag, for example, came out of the sexual revolution of the 1960s and ’70s, and it developed so rapidly into its own little universe—with its own rules and taboos, customs and conventions—that even somebody born just a generation earlier would have a hard time understanding it. What began as men dressing in women’s clothing, partly as a sexual kink and partly as an expression of personal identity, has morphed into a full-scale community which, despite its deep links to gay and transsexual cultures, is distinct and independent from either.

Modern Drag (dibs on the magazine name) is largely centered around live stage performances in which men dress as outrageous caricatures of women and lip-synch Lil’ Kim for what are sometimes huge audiences. The audience members, and the performers they’ve come to cheer for, may be gay, straight, or bisexual. They may identify as men, women, or mind-your-own-business. Some performers are doing it for the money, some for the fame, and still others because a team of horses couldn’t stop them from doing it. They are, in other words, Drag queens.

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Drag Profile Closeup

Source: Img Kid

Drag Profile Vintage

Like most subcultures which suddenly become visible, Drag has deep roots. The kind of cross-dressing practiced in the 19th century seems mostly to have been a personal matter, though stage performances were being enjoyed by the end of the century. Source: On Se Croyait Chic

Drag Profile Dark Dress

Most of the time, these burlesques were intended for humorous effect or as incidental elements in a larger performance. Drag, as a unique genre of performing arts, only really developed somewhat after the demise of Vaudeville. Still, pretty dress. Source: Pinterest

Drag Profile Julian Elting

Julian Elting was a gigantic Vaudeville star and one of the few such performers to make the breakthrough into silent films. Here he is in the 1910 film An Adventuress, expressing the hidden desire to choke out an enemy while wearing an elegant silk number with lace at the collar. Source: The Julian Elting Project

Drag Profile Elting

Source: People Check

Drag Profile Makeup Test

No discussion of Drag can go far before Divine comes up. The liberated spirit the world knew as Divine was born Harris Glenn Milstead, in Baltimore of all places, in 1945. As a kid, Glenn was lucky enough to have the corrupting influence of a close friendship with John Waters, who reportedly gave him the name he'd be known by for the rest of his life. Source: The Back Lot

Drag Profile Pink Flamingos

Before Divine mugged the underground film scene in the 1960s and '70s, Drag queens almost always tried to pass as totally convincing women. Drag was essentially a live-action female impersonation. Divine dragged that out and shot it. Huge in every way, Divine practically invented modern Drag by tearing her character loose from "realism" and cooking up a persona which was clearly intended to be a loud, brash, raunchy man in makeup and an evening gown. Nobody ever mistook Divine for a woman, nor were they supposed to. Drag had arrived in the modern age. Source: The Daily Beast

Divine Mens Clothes

By all accounts, Glenn was a gentle and loving person offstage. This picture, by the way, was taken by Andy Warhol; that's how relevant Divine was. Source: Daily Mail

Drag Profile Chick Fil A

He's still relevant. Here's a mural with Chick-fil-A's president rendered in Divine's makeup as a political protest. Source: Ash Vegas

Drag Profile Hairspray

Glenn and John at the premiere of their breakout hit Hairspray. Three weeks after this picture, Glenn was dead from an enlarged heart. Source: The Baltimore Sun

Drag Profile Catsuit

Another pioneer in Drag is RuPaul, seen here wearing a small quantity of body paint in lieu of clothes. Source: The Huffington Post

Drag Profile RuPaul

RuPaul helped put the nail in the lid of "female impersonation" by going right over the top and declaring: "I do not impersonate females! How many women do you know who wear seven-inch heels, four-foot wigs, and skintight dresses?" Source: Us Magazine

Drag Profile Festival Winners

Much of Drag's appeal is in the crafting of a special persona, behind which normally inhibited performers can go completely overboard with extravagant costumes, makeup, and stage antics. This has fueled an ever-spiraling race to the top of Fabulous Mountain, which hasn't stopped yet. Source: Drag Queens Of The World

Drag Profile Flag

Source: Img Kid

Drag Profile Piano

Source: Dragaholic

Drag Profile Drunk Drag

Drag has its own aesthetic, in which the most beautiful thing you can be is a brash alcoholic with an attitude and a smart mouth. Here, Mary Edith Pitts verbally abuses an audience full of people who paid for tickets. Source: YouTube

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The 10 Most Powerful Oscars Speeches Ever

Oscars Statue

Source: NBC

The Oscars has always been rife with political controversy and emotional turmoil. Whether you like it or not, Oscar winners often use their time at the dais to make a plea for change or to expound on their own political views. In these videos, we see ten of the most controversial, emotional, and memorable Oscars speeches of all time:

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Marlon Brando

Marlon Brando refuses the Oscar for his portrayal of Vito Corleone, allowing Sacheen Littlefeather to take the stage to speak about the rights of Native Americans and the Wounded Knee Incident of 1973.

Sally Field

Sally Field shows real human vulnerability in this famous speech when receiving her first Oscar for her leading role in Places In The Heart.

Charlie Chaplin

Charlie Chaplin receives this honorary award for his groundbreaking work in film, perhaps most notably for his portrayal of an unwitting despot in The Great Dictator.

Octavia Spencer

Octavia Spencer shows incredible humility and gratitude after winning the Oscar for her role as Minny Jackson in The Help.

Tom Hanks

Tom Hanks sheds tears for two of his lost mentors, who happen to be gay, after winning Best Actor for his portrayal of a gay man afflicted by AIDS in the movie Philadelphia.

Michael Moore

Michael Moore lashes out against what he calls 'a fictitious president' and 'a fictitious war' in this controversial 2003 Oscar acceptance speech following his win for Bowling For Columbine.

John Legend and Common

John Legend and Common make an impassioned speech after winning the Oscar for Best Original Song, talking about race and mass incarceration, saying 'the struggle for justice is now'.

Vanessa Redgrave

In this shocking speech, Vanessa Redgrave speaks out against violence in Palestine after her win for Julia, a 1977 film portraying the plight of two Jewish women who meet to conspire against Nazi Germany.

Patricia Arquette

Patricia Arquette makes a passionate plea for equal rights for women, condemning the gender pay gap in Hollywood after her win for Boyhood.

Dustin Lance Black

Dustin Lance Black reassures his fellow gay and lesbian artists that they too 'will have equal rights' after winning Best Original Screenplay for Milk.

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If these videos inspired you, then you must check out our post exploring the greatest speeches in human history.

Thirty-Three Maps That Explain The United States Better Than Any Textbook

Years ago, famed historian E.H. Carr made an apt point that one cannot separate the historian from history and that what we see in history books is not necessarily pure fact–it has been made and presented as such due to the judgments of a very fallible and selective person. All of this is to say that when it comes to getting to the reasons why the United States looks the way it does today, “truth”–if we can find it–is quite hard to come by.

For every historian who disputes the reasons why a certain war broke out or how a particular president’s decision changed the fate of America, there’s a map which lays hard data bare and allows for the viewer’s own interpretation. Maps aren’t as immediately exciting as a good story, which is why we tend to overlook them when trying to understand our present. We’d like to change that. Without further ado, here are thirty-three fascinating maps that explain the United States:

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The Highest Paid Public Employees In Each State

The Highest Paid Public Employees In The United States

Once additional compensation from media appearances, fundraising and apparel contracts are factored in, sports coaches are the highest-paid employees in 40 out of 50 states.

The Status Of Gay Marriage By State As Of February 2015

Gay Marriage 2015

When the US Supreme Court struck down the Defense of Marriage Act, many activists rejoiced--gay marriage was here at last. While they did declare DOMA unconstitutional, the Supreme Court still left the decision of permitting or banning gay marriage up to individual states. As of this writing, 37 states allow gay marriage, with groups challenging marriage restrictions in the states that haven't adopted more inclusive marriage laws.

Meth Labs By County

Meth Labs By County

Once a relatively obscure drug associated with biker gangs, methamphetamine has become one of the most popular drugs in America thanks to its relatively easy and cheap production. In a recent nationwide survey, one out of two hundred adults in America reported using meth in the past year.

Mean Center Of Population In The United States

If each American had the same "weight", the mean center of the US population would be the point where, if split down the middle, the two halves would perfectly balance out. As we can see, the lure of the western "frontier" has really stuck.

Global Obesity Rates

Global Obesity Rates

Among developed countries, the United States has the highest rate of obesity, with one-third of the population classified as obese. This rate is estimated by the Harvard School of Public Health to reach 50% by 2030.

Global Incarceration Rates

Global Incarceration Rates

As of 2014, the United States has the highest incarceration rate on the planet. While America represents 4.4% of the world's population, it houses 22% of the world's prisoners.

US Economic Activity Map

In many respects, the United States is the tale of two countries. Not only is money increasingly concentrated in the hands of fewer people, but also in fewer areas of the United States.

The Largest Ancestry By County In The United States

Ancestry In The United States

The legacy of conquest and opportunity-seeking can be found in our blood--and on our maps. African and African American ancestry is most common in the once slave-holding South, just as Mexican heritage in Texas transcends annexation and war.

Countries That Use The Imperial System

Metric System

As of 2015, only three countries continue to eschew the metric system in favor of the Imperial system: Burma, Liberia, and the United States.

Size Of Alaska

In the standard Mercator projection map, Alaska is shown to be comparable to Texas in terms of size. In reality, it's actually twice the size of Texas and roughly 25% the overall size of the continental United States.

Deployment Of American Troops By Country

US Worldwide Troop Deployment

A consistent source of global tension, 230,000 members of the United States military are deployed in over 160 countries across the world.

Paid Maternity Leave In America

The United States joins Suriname, Liberia and a handful of other countries that decline to provide paid maternity leave. Meanwhile, access to affordable contraception and family planning services has become the subject of intense political debate.

How Americans Say Groups Of People

"Y'all" is one of the most common linguistic markers of Southern heritage, but its origins actually come from across the pond. Scots-Irish immigrants brought the phrase "Ye aw" with them to the South, and the rest, they say, is history.

Racial Segregation In Chicago

Racial Segregation Of Chicago

While government-mandated racial segregation ended in the 1960s, de facto residential segregation has sprung up in its wake. The above map of Chicago's white, black, Asian and Latino populations visualizes just how insulated groups continue to be from each other.

United States Census Blocks With No Populations

Uninhabited America

While the green tones collecting in the Western half of the US might inspire a misanthrope to make a move to Utah, beware: most of the uninhabited areas in this map are only that way due to natural features that make it difficult to live there or because human settlement is prohibited there (think national parks).

A Map Of Light Pollution In The United States

Light Pollution United States Map

The east coast of America suffers from some of the worst light pollution in the planet, depicted in the heat map above of light pollution in the continental US.

Extermination Of American Bison

Once numbering in the hundreds of millions in North America, the American Bison were slaughtered in the 1800s for their fur and meat during the westward expansion of the United States. Bison populations were pushed to the point of near-extinction with only 1,000 left in the 1890s, but were saved by an aggressive conservation program put in place by Theodore Roosevelt. Read about the near-extinction of American Bison on All That Is Interesting.

Mexican Drug Cartels Map

There are a number of reasons why drug cartels have gained such influence over the Mexican state and the United States never-ending War on Drugs is one of them. Mexico is a major US heroin supplier as well as the largest foreign supplier of methamphetamine and marijuana. In fact, production of these drugs has only increased since Mexico launched its own War on Drugs in 2005. Currently, the drug trade employs approximately 500,000 people and contributes around $30 billion a year to the Mexican economy.

The Happiest States In The United States

Happiest States In The United States

America Visualized By Distance To The Nearest McDonald's

America Map By McDonalds Locations

In many ways, McDonald's has become the face of America both home and abroad. Domestically, one can hardly drive without encountering one of the 14,000 McDonald's located in America, visualized clearly by the map above.

The Fourth Congressional District Of Illinois

Gerrymandering In The United States

Gerrymandering -- the practice of manipulating boundaries of political representation to favor one party has become a country-wide problem. The Economist calls Illinois’ Fourth Congressional District one of the most strangely drawn gerrymandered districts in the country. Crammed into these two tiny swaths of land are a vast amount of left-leaning Latinos, which effectively ensures that they will only have one representative in Congress and consequently cannot sway other races in the city.

The Most Popular Website By State

Most Popular Website By State

Regional differences don't only mean culinary and linguistic distinctions, but also differences in media consumption, in part due to local employment sectors. The tech-heavy northwest prefers TechCrunch while the states surrounding Washington DC favors Politico.

The Most Recognizable Brand From Every State

Recognizable Brands Of Each State

Florida, we're looking at you.

Death Penalty Practices Across The World

Death Penalty World Map

The United States is currently the only developed nation that still practices the death penalty. In 2008, it joined China, Iran, and 43 other countries in voting against a United Nations resolution against the death penalty.

The Gender Imbalance Of Singles Across American Cities

Single People In America

If you're a woman looking for love, it might behoove you to head west.

The Height Of The Mexican Empire In 1823

Height Of The Mexican Empire

From 1821 to 1848 California, Texas and New Mexico formed three provinces of the Mexican Empire.

The Amount Of Snow It Takes To Cancel Snow By County

Snow It Take To Cancel School In The US

The United States is one of the most geographically and topographically diverse countries on Earth. Case in point: temperatures have hovered around -50 degrees in Alaska on the same day that temperatures top 130 degrees in Death Valley.

State Autocomplete Map

We can trace the US story through stereotypes: in the South, many wonder why states are so poor, racist and backwards, and why the Northeast is such a white, liberal enclave.

Fifty-Six Years Of Tornadoes Mapped

Tornado Tracks United States

Known as Tornado Alley, the American Midwest is home to the highest frequency of tornadoes in the world.

The Probability Of Upward Mobility In America By Locality

Upward Mobility In America Map

If you want your child to have a shot at entering a higher tier of the socioeconomic echelon, you might not want to settle down in the South, where segregation both class and race tends to shape your future.

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Mapping The Center Of The United States
Mapping The Center Of The United States
A Sobering Look At Capital Punishment In The United States
A Sobering Look At Capital Punishment In The United States
The History Of United States Elections
The History Of United States Elections

If you enjoyed our collection of maps of America, check out All That Is Interesting’s other posts on twenty-five maps that make sense of the world and interesting facts that will blow your mind!

Cinephiles, Rejoice: Here Are The 10 Coolest Cinemas In The World

Sometimes, going to the theater is less about the show and more about the atmosphere. Luxurious seating, gorgeous colors, historical memorabilia and novelty all play a part in the cinematic experience. Regardless of what you’re seeing, any entertainment gets a boost in value when your surroundings are as intriguing (sometimes more so) as the scenes on the silver screen.

The Orange Cinema Club, Beijing

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