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date: 05 December 2023



  • Vassiliki Panoussi


Cross-dressing is the act of dressing in clothing considered appropriate for a different gender. The practice, ancient or modern, is studied alongside issues of gender identity and sexuality and falls into the purview of both gender studies and transgender studies. Ancient Greek and Roman examples of cross-dressing of male to female are many, whilst female to male are very few. Ancient attitudes to the practice vary: cross-dressing is socially permitted in the case of theatre actors who performed female roles dressed as women and as part of religious custom. Hostility and condemnation are also frequent in both Greek and Roman sources, as cross-dressing by men is also linked to effeminacy and homosexuality. The modern theoretical framework of transgender studies can help in the study of cross-dressing in Greece and Rome. In turn, ancient concepts associated with cross-dressing can shed light on modern concepts and practices.


  • Gender Studies

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