Date of Award

Spring 5-11-2018

Degree Type

Capstone Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts in Cultural Studies (BA)


Cultural Studies

First Advisor

Douglas Reichert Powell

Second Advisor

Carmelo Esterrich

Third Advisor

Kenneth Daley


The goal of this essay is to re-explore the concept of gender in its relation to genderqueer and nonbinary identities. Before its examination of the gender reveal party, this essay examines male and female, masculine and feminine, and man and woman, carefully critiquing and distinguishing biological sex from gender expression and gender identity using a Queer theoretical framework to contextualize these distinctions in relation to queer identities. Through a modern contextualization, linguistic analysis, and a critical media examination of gender reveal images and footage, this essay acknowledges and analyzes the heteronormative structures that reinforce gender binaries. It challenges the deployment of gender expectations and restrictions on unborn children; understands gender as a complex superstructure that cannot be predicted through sexual organs; and actively deconstructs existing binaries. Questioning the ways this process erases queer bodies, this essay examines the forced unidirectional and linear movement between the gender binaries, and ponders how a fluid, multidirectional definition of gender is able to cultivate when said binaries constrain both socially and linguistically before a person is born. 27 pages.