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Performance plays an integral part in creating and sustaining queer public cultures, serving as a method of artistic inquiry, a mode of sexual expression, and a means of social protest. Gay theatres provided increasing opportunities for male playwrights, but they were generally much less receptive to plays by and about lesbians. The question of whether lesbian sexuality and dyke modes of humor can be made intelligible to broader audiences has preoccupied artists and activists since the earliest days of second wave feminism. The first AIDS drama to win a Pulitzer Prize was Tony Kushner's epic two-part saga, Angels in America: A Gay Fantasia on National Themes. This daring theatrical experiment about life during the Reagan regime was one of the defining cultural events of the twentieth century. Lesbians, queers of color, and transgender artists often find themselves marginalized and lacking cultural capital, as racial distinctions and gender identifications continue to exert a profound effect on visibility and an artist's viability.