As James shows, What Maisie Knew is preoccupied with visual performative effects of sex, gender, and sexuality based on materiality of bodies, dressing, cosmetics, and decorated body parts. Just as a series of visual performances blurs the boundaries of gender, sexuality, class, age, and race in the child`s point of view, Maisie is given a daunting task of redrawing the boundaries. Just as many critics agree with a reading of the novel as the story of the young girl`s moral growth, part of her growing is involved in her coming out of a passive receptacle through her efforts to disentangle herself from the confusion. I argue that James`s presentation of the American Countess is effective in influencing Maisie in understanding how to draw the line between this and that. The presence of the American Countess is crucial because she teaches Maisie the possibilities in plurality. Critics have argued about the identity of the American Countess and recently they claim the American Countess as a racial category. She is either an African American, an East Indian, or a Native Indian. However, as I argue, James`s portrayal of the American Countess is ambiguous, incomprehensible, and indeterminable as to be defined as the figure of queerness. The queerness manifested by the American Countess produces pivotal moments in Maisie`s growing into the maturing state. As part of her growing up means to know all and everything, Maisie reaches the point of knowing “all” through learning how to play a part in a scene staged by her father in the Countess`s apartment and she becomes an adult.