(Fox News) The Biden administration is funding a scholarly book on queer performers and digital privacy written by a drag queen who wrote several drag-themed children’s books.
The National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) in January announced a $60,000 grant for a book about how drag performers and trans/queer subjects “playfully dazzle both the human senses and computational sensors,” drawing on “case studies including drag queens, trans taxi drivers, cruising gay men and femme witches.”
The author of the book, Harris Kornstein, performs in drag as Lil Miss Hot Mess, a fixture at controversial drag queen story hours who became a lightning rod for Republican politicians and parental rights organizations who say the events expose children to sexually suggestive content.
Lil Miss Hot Mess is also listed as the author of children’s books “The Hips on the Drag Queen Go Swish, Swish, Swish” and “If You’re a Drag Queen and You Know It,” two drag-themed revisions of popular kid’s rhymes.
The NEH research program description says the book will explore “digital enchantment,” which the author describes as “a framework that explores how diverse queer and trans users subvert and expand traditional approaches of privacy by creatively exploiting the features of mainstream technologies and creating their own platforms.”
Kornstein’s alter ego, Lil Miss Hot Mess, has been a flashpoint in the controversy surrounding drag queen performances targeting children and has defended the children’s books and events as a co-founder and board member of Drag Queen Story Hour, an international organization.
“I wrote (“The Hips on the Drag Queen”) because I wanted everyone to get to experience the magic of drag and to get a little practice shaking their hips or shimmying their shoulders — to know how we can feel fabulous inside of our own bodies,” Lil Miss Hot Mess said during a drag queen story hour featured on PBS in 2021.