Preferred Name

Megan Moore

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


School of Communication Studies


Kathryn Hobson

Melissa Alemán

Sharlene Richards


Plunging necklines on a tight, pink dress. Thick, black, winged eyeliner meticulously crafted in the mirror. Loud, thundering heels adorn my aching feet, announcing my presence as I glide down the hallway. Straddling my femme partner as she admires my fem(m)inine hourglass figure amidst the satin sheets. This is how I “do femme” - but not all femmes participate in the same performance of femme as I do. Through reflexive-dyadic interviews with eleven fellow queer femmes, I investigate the various ways that femmes conceptualize their own version of femmeness, the methods by which they resist patriarchal femininity, and how they navigate femme on femme romantic and sexual relationships. I explore how femme couples reconceptualize intimacy and queer pleasure whilst resisting heteronormative principles within their relationship and further analyze reasons as to why some femmes cannot see themselves in a relationship with a fellow femme. The interviews with fellow femmes, alongside my personal reflection on my own femmeness and femme/femme relationship, revealed that femmes use a multitude of ways to resist patriarchal, heterosexual norms. On the other hand, the interviews and my personal reflection also exposed a stereotypical, more privileged version of femme as being the archetype of femmeness. This further marginalized femmes who did not fit this mold, leaving them in a liminal space of attempting to fully grasp at their femmeness. The goal of this research was initially to investigate how femmes “do femme” with each other in romantic and sexual relationships. However, it transformed into a way of connecting femmes who sought affirmation and validity in their identity and relationships.

Available for download on Thursday, April 10, 2025