While a typhoon hit her country, Miss Philippines Ariella Arida was in the running for the crown of Miss Universe 2013. She had the “people’s backing” earning her right into the top 16 through online voting. She eventually placed 4th. Gabriela Isler of Venezuela of won the 2013 title of Miss Universe.
Beauty pageants with multicultural beauty
Discussion surrounding multiculturalism, racism, white privilege and more. We pick out what, to some white folk, may seem mundane, but the flip side is that many things we say have bias tied to them. While “race” is often lumped into non-race items and instead of seeing the bias that is tied, I know, I, for one often say “that has nothing to do with race” but yes it will still have some bias in it. Language, for example – there’s bias in language preference, but I’d not say it has to do with race as much as it has to do with regionalism. I am still a bit up in the air as to whether language preference (correct English, preferred English) is as “bad” as cultural linguists will put make it seem. But, I do know there is more awareness of cultural differences and it is another item that causes social media fights.
The ideal of blond hair, blue eyes, tall is beauty of the past. While there have been Latina beauty queens in the US, as well as African Americans, this year the US has Nina Davuluri, their first nationally crowned beauty queen of Indian heritage. Nina Davuluri is Miss New York 2013 and Miss America 2014.
Beauty may be in the eye of the beholder, but there’s instances world wide of modifications to a person in the name of beauty. Botox, skin lighteners, tanning beds, nose jobs, neck lengthening, feet binding. The list goes on.
2013 Beauty Pageant Contestants with Mixed Cultural Heritage
Mixed race couples are becoming more prominent in media. The “Cheerios Commercial” opened the conversation for many. Yesterday India premiered their first “white daughter in law” serial (daughter in law/Indian mother in law serials are the “thing” here).
In 2013 American-born Megan Young was crowned Miss World. Her mother is Filipino and her father is “American” and she had moved to the Phillipines at age 10. She represented the Philippines.
Cecilia Aisha Iftikhar, who has mixed Pakistani and Danish heritage, represented Denmark in Miss Universe 2013.
Culture and heritage affect a sense of “belonging” and acceptance. New York-born Katherina Roshana, who, in other contests goes by the full name Katherina Roshana Khan also holds the title of Miss India Guyana.
Canada was represented by Riza Santos, whose parents are Filipino.
Olivia Rose Bourrillon, whose father is Indian and mother is Australian of Italian descent
Parul Shah a competitor in the Miss Phillipines contest is Dubai-born and of Indian and Filipino heritage
International Pageant List
- Miss International takes place in Tokyo in December. List of Delegates are available online.
- Miss Earth – is a beauty pageant with an environmental cause.
- Miss World is the longest surviving international beauty pageant.
- Miss Universe just completed November 9, 2013.
In the end, beauty is within the eye of the beholder. Beauty is skin deep. There are so many things said, but what defines beauty varies in cultures. Those teetering among cultures may have a hard time finding themselves with out support of their family and the communities at large. While the beauty queens have faced prejudice (calling Nina slurs based on her heritage, and some that should have embarrassed the people tweeting as they showed their lack of geographical or historical knowledge, Megan Young faced tweets indicating less of a value she would have as a person due to her Filipino background), the every day people also face these biases. While beauty may bring status to how one looks – it does little to the overall perception of people and women on the whole due to the lack of positive light beauty pageants hold as it is. But, some steps are better than none when it comes, right?