Origin of beauty pageants globally

Origin of beauty pageants globally

The yearly Miss World competition was then founded in 1951 by Eric Douglas Morley, Miss Universe founded in 1952 by Pacific Knitting Mills, Miss International founded in 1960 by Nawat Itsaragrisil, and Miss Earth founded in 2001 by Ramon Monzonwith to raise environmental awareness across the world.

Some events have been around for long that it is hard to trace back to when they really started, beauty pageants for example. These are said to have begun as photographic beauty pageants, as opposed to the customary mass gathering events they now entice.

The oldest dates back to the 1800s then known as bathing beauty contests and in the 1850s when contestants would have their pictures published in the newspapers. Literature notes that the first contemporary beauty pageants did not occur until 1921 in Atlantic City, New Jersey when Margaret Gorman won the first-ever Miss America title.

Miss America Pageantry was broadcasted for the first time by ABC in 1954, making the event a national spectacle. Beauty pageants ever since started spreading to cities across the United States, with colleges combining them with Homecoming Queen and May Day traditions. Beauty pageantries had already gained the popularity by early 1960s and were regarded useful in constructing the feminine identity.

They all had a few things in common. Unmarried girls of a specified age range, not in any relationship or known sexual affair, a certain height and weight, among other criteria, were required to join the competition. However, in the 1960s, the Mrs. NC State pageant differed in one keyway. The participants were required to be married. The prime goal was to reinforce a domestic housewife’s identity and applaud talents geared toward the home. The winner for the year would then be crowned by her husband.

The fact that practically all beauty pageants were founded by men sparked a lot of controversies. As time passed, feminism and women’s empowerment organizations began to criticize beauty pageants; suggesting that they were used to objectify women and did not promote women’s empowerment as grandly portrayed. Many pageantries were also marred with scandals over time.

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