A term that first emerged in the context of speech act theory (J. L. Austin), and which was later popularized by queer critical theorists Judith Butler and Eve Sedgwick. When an expression is performative, it is both a figure of speech and an action. One paradigmatic example is the “I do” of the marriage ceremony, where the words themselves enact the legality of getting married. Similarly, “I promise” itself carries out a promise. One could say that performativity is an example of the voice’s nonlinguistic force, as much as it exemplifies the power of language.