On Thursday morning I presented this paper at the 34th annual Gender Studies Symposium at Lewis & Clark College (where I went to school)—Material Conditions: Gender, Sexuality, Capitalism. This represented the culmination of my third phase of scholarship on Seinfeld, which amounted to watching whatever was available on crackle.com for the last couple of months, reading late '70s to early '90s feminist applications to ''70s-era theories of deconstruction, and, of course, thinking really hard about Seinfeld. The first era (watching every episode at least twice between 1995 and 2001) amounted to a book report on The Entire Domain,
Paradoxically, Jerry also draws his power by wearing the shirt, albeit uncomfortably, just as he does by parodying the way a woman wears a purse, or complains in “the Boyfriend” that a man he went on a friend date hasn’t called him again. When he does his stand up routine he wears a blazer and tie in his performance of masculinity, in the way that a bio queen—a woman performing as a drag queen—is performing an exaggeration of her assumed gender, which happens to be wildly different than who “she” “is,” or rather the gender she does. The puffy shirt remains in the Smithsonian, its up to us, however, to decide what it means.