Publication Date

5-1-2007

Advisor(s)

Zheng, Su

Department

Music

Language

English

Abstract

In the mid-1990s, a new trend--the so-called fanchuan show, a male cross-dressing show--made a great impact on Taiwan's entertainment industry. In my study, I examine cultural representation within and politics surrounding a male cross-dressing performance troupe called Redtop Arts. Redtop, established in Taipei in 1994, is a case study through which I scrutinize gender ideology and modernist cultures at large in Taiwan. Redtop's organization, politics, representation of females, multicultural programs, and selection of various musical materials from around the world highlight the Taiwanese public's perceptions of sexuality and gender, as well as exemplify the democratic hybrid culture of postcolonial Taiwan. My study examines six aspects of fanchuan show: the history of male cross-dressing performance in China and Taiwan; the emergence of modern Taiwanese show business; musical meaning in Redtop's programs; fanchuan yiren on- and offstage; and the significance of fanchuan show in Taiwanese society. By placing this case study in a larger cultural context and by utilizing theoretical approaches to gender, identity, commercialization, and globalization in the postmodern era, I address issues of gender representation in the Taiwanese media, and the hybridization and commercialization of popular culture in Taiwan.

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