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"There She Is, Miss America " : Politics of Sex, Beauty, and Race in America's Most Famous Pageant

"There She Is, Miss America " : Politics of Sex, Beauty, and Race in America's Most Famous Pageant - 04 edition

ISBN13: 978-1403963024

Cover of "There She Is, Miss America " : Politics of Sex, Beauty, and Race in America
ISBN13: 978-1403963024
ISBN10: 1403963029
Cover type: Paperback
Edition/Copyright: 04
Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan Ltd.
Published: 2004
International: No

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"There She Is, Miss America " : Politics of Sex, Beauty, and Race in America's Most Famous Pageant - 04 edition

ISBN13: 978-1403963024

Elwood Watson and Darcy Martin

ISBN13: 978-1403963024
ISBN10: 1403963029
Cover type: Paperback
Edition/Copyright: 04
Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan Ltd.

Published: 2004
International: No
Summary

While some see the Miss American Pageant as hokey vestige of another era, many remain enthralled by the annual Atlantic City event. And whether you love it or hate it, no one can deny the impact the contest has had on American popular culture-indeed, many reality television shows seem to have taken cues from the pageant. Founded in 1921, the Miss America Pageant has provided a fascinating glimpse into how American standards of femininity have been defined, projected, maintained, and challenged. At various times, it has been praised as a positive role model for young American women, protested as degrading to women by feminists, and shamed by scandals, such as the one caused by the Penthouse photos of Vanessa Williams in 1984. In this first interdisciplinary anthology to examine this uniquely American event, scholars defend, critique, and reflect on the pageant, grappling with themes like beauty, race, the body, identity, kitsch, and consumerism. "There She Is, Miss America" provides a fascinating examination of an enduring American icon.

Table of Contents

Pt. I. History

1. Bathing suits and backlash : the first Miss America pageants, 1921-1927 27
2. Miss America, Rosie the Riveter, and World War II 53
3. Miss America, national identity, and the identity politics of whiteness 67

Pt. II. Gender, race, and identity

4. The rhetoric of black bodies : race, beauty, and representation 93
5. Princess literature and the Miss America pageant 111
6. Wiregrass country pageant competitions, or what's beauty got to do with it? 125

Pt. III. Personal reflections

7. I was Miss Meridian 1985 : Sororophobia, Kitsch, and local pageantry 137
8. My Miss Americas : pedagogy and pageantry in the Heartland 153
9. Waiting for Miss America

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